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A Study in the Perfect Type of the Human Form the Marvel oj 
Anatomists, Sculptors, and Artists in the Nude ; embracing 
the great Athlete's simple method of PJf^ifalJ^J-.yationfor 
the Home, the Gymnasium, and thf*&, ,, __ < raining \ooi ;- 
preceded by a biography dealing with the chief incidents in 
Mr. Sandow's Professional Career, his Phenomenal Prowess 
and Gladiatorial Skill, in Competitive Matches, Contests and 
Exhibitions; with Mr. Sundew's Scheme of Dumb-bell and 
Bar-bell Exercises, and his Views on the Physiology of 
Gymnastics, the Function of the Muscles, etc., etc. 





Richly Illustrated from Photographs expressly taken for the work by Sarony of New York 
Morrison of Chicago, and White of Birmingham, and from Drawing by A . Casarin. ' 

JUN 10 


A, P, WATTS & CO,, 






All rights of translation reserved. 












NEW YOKK, January, 1894. . 



THE following pages have been prepared under Mr. San- 
dow's direction and personal supervision. In the practical 
section appended to the narrative account of the great athlete's 
early amateur and later professional life, Mr. Sandow has 
furnished detailed instructions for the performance of his 
dumb-bell and bar-bell exercises and supplied the reader with 
a text-book which, he would fain hope, will be useful to the 
would-be athlete and to all who desire to attain perfect health, 
increased strength, and the full development of their physical 

Since the volume was put in type, further testimony, of a 
gratifying kind, to the value of Mr. Sandow's system of physi- 
cal training has come to hand, in Captain Greatorex's court- 
eous letter, to be found in the Appendix. It is regretted that 

the communication was not received in time to insert in the 


chapter to which it belongs that on "Physical Culture in 
Relation to the Army." The letter forms a pleasant pendant, 
much prized by Mr. Sandow, to the one which appears in the 
chapter referred to, from Colonel Fox, H. M. Inspector of 
Military Gymnasia for the British army. 

The illustrations to the practical as well as to the narrative 
portions of the book will, it is believed, add no little to its 
value. To the courtesy of Messrs. Sarony of New York, Mor- 
rison of Chicago, and H. Eoland White of Birmingham, Eng- 
land, the publishers are indebted for permission to reproduce 
the photographs. 

The Editor takes advantage of this prefatory note to ac- 
knowledge his obligations to Mr. Sandow and his pupil, Mr. 
Martinus Sieveking ; to Mr. W. T. Lawson, member of the 
New York Athletic Club ; to Dr. D. A. Sargent of the Hemen : 
way Gymnasium, Harvard University ; to Dr. Everett M. 
Culver of New York ; to Dr. W. Theophilus Stuart of Toronto, 
Canada, and to the Publishers, for courtesies received during 
the preparation of the work. 

NEW YORK, February 1, 1894. 

vi 11 





Consummate beauty of physical form Knowledge possessed by the ancients 
in relation to physical training The jar and fret of modern business life 
Health rather than strength the great requisite of the times Sports and 
pastimes of the people Appurtenances of our gymnasia too costly and 
elaborate All exercises should be performed on the ground Attention 
to chest development The prolific causes of disease and physical degen- 
eracy 1 



Sandow a study for the physiologist and anatomist For four years the lion of 
London Crowned heads pay him honour Notable scientists give testi- 
mony as to his muscular power and physical endowments His system of 
physical training adopted for the British army Examined by Dr. Sargent, 
of Harvard Mighty deeds of ancient story Emulating effects of these 
heroic acts Sandow comes to know his own power 12 



At birth nothing of a prodigy Inherits simply a healthy and normally well- 
developed frame His student days Attached to the gymnasium and the 



circus Becomes notable as a wrestler Visits Rome with his father and 
admires classical sculpture Decline of the physical ideal Quarrels with 
his father and runs away from home Enters University of Gottingen 
Studies anatomy at Brussels Meets Atilla First public exhibitions 21 



Sandow dependent upon liis own resources Arrives at Amsterdam and seeks 
employment as a strongman Daring scheme to advertise himself Hard 
up, and takes a cabman into confidence Wrecks the machines for testing 
strength throughout the city A thousand guilders reward Arrested: 
amusing scenes at the police station Released, and makes the fortune of 
a hotel-keeper Receives his first engagement at a theatre First visit to 
London Accident to Atilla, and is thrown out of employment Goes to 
Paris Fruitless efforts to get an engagement Startles a professor at the 
Academy of Arts with an exhibition of his strength Earns 200 francs as a 
model Meets Francois and joins him in pantomime 28 



Visits Rome and gives exhibitions in the Colosseum as a wrestier Performs 
mighty feats of strength Wrestles with Bartoletti and wins 1,000 francs 
Achieves fame and has King Humbert and his court as admirers Gift 
from the king Visits Emperor Frederick by command at San Remo 
Astonishes the Kaiser by an exhibition of his powers Receives a ring 
from Frederick Pathetic words of the dying Emperor at the leave-taking. 
Wrestling matches at Florence, Milan, and Naples Contest with three 
trained athletes and puts all successively on their backs Wins 5,000 francs 
Buys a home at Venice Hurts his arm in a wrestling contest Retorts 
with a loving embrace Attracts the attention of an English painter 
Makes him the subject of a study Tells him of Samson's challenge- 
Starts post-haste for the British metropolis 35 


Sandow takes London by storm Pen portrait of the young athlete Lifts 
Samson's gage of battle and beats his pupil Cyclops Wins the 100 wager 



Great feats of strength at the Royal Aquarium The London Sportsman 
on the contest Accepts Samson's 500 challenge London disillusionized. 43 



Strong men in rivalry Uproarious night at the Aquarium Sandow flies the 
blue-peter of success Exciting scenes at the contest Samson theatrical 
and querulous Great talkee-talkee The Daily News on the affair San- 
dow declared winner of the 500 Relative merits of the two athletes' 
feats of strength Fillip given by the contest to athletics Engagement at 
The Alhambra Royalty honours Sandow 54 



The Press and " the War of the Titans "Sandow at The Alhambra Tour of 
the Provinces Sandow in Scotland Repertoire of feats Exhibition of 
mountains of muscle 65 



The two giants, Sandow and the Aix-la-Chapelle quarryman Crowded audi- 
ences Varied programme of entertainment Lifting 500 Ibs. with one 
finger At the London Pavilion with Loris Phenomenal feats of strength 71 



The Morning Post on the match with " Hercules " McCann Inexplicable 
issues of the contest The Press on the miscarriage of justice Wins 
50 wager for lifting a 250-lb. weight from the shoulder 77 



Wins the gold championship belt of the London Athletic Institute Great 
right and left hand work Breaking Hercules's record Making three great 
records At Birmingham and Liverpool 83 





Military circles interested in Sandow Training depots take up his system of 
light dumb-bell exercise Surgeon-Major Deane's Lecture at Woolwich 
Sandow ' an object lesson in Gymnastic Anatomy ' Report of the 
London Lancet Colonel Fox, H. M. Inspector of Military Gymnasia, en- 
dorses Sandow' s methods of Physical Training 89 



A case of " bringing down the house " Sandow chez lui Risks of housing a 
strongman lodger A holiday in Paris An unpleasant rencontre A pug- 
nacious Frenchman Severe chastisement of the aggressor Sequel in 
London Presented with a valuable chronometer Tracking a brace of 
thieves at Nice Sandow his own law-enforcer 98 



Accepts American engagements Opens at the Casino, New York The New 
York World on Sandow Sandow' s great hitting power His increasing 
strength Interviewed by the New York Herald Holding up three horses 106 


Sandow as a physiological study Examined by Dr. Sargent, of Harvard 
The "strongest man measured" Wonderful abdominal muscles In- 
genious electrical tests Speed in delivering a blow 119 



Physical perfection of the great athlete The culmination of a system which 
will enable the weakest to become strong Predisposing causes of San- 



dow's physical strength A reporter's interview How Sandow became 
muscular His effective system Further chat with the strongman 
Results of his training His faith pinned to the use of light-weight dumb- 
bells 129 



Mr. Sandow' s introduction to his practical exercises His views on the the- 
oretic and practical bearing of physical training Influence of bodily exer- 
cise on the human organism A symmetrical and all-round development 
Exercise in fresh air Dumb-bell and bar-bell exercises recommended 
Ineffective and vicious systems of training Correct habits of breathing. 140 



The rationale of gymnastics Effect of exercise in beautifying women Preju- 
dice, indifference, and delusion The bugbear of training Hygenic ef- 
fects of exercise Muscular exercise as an aid to digestion Dieting and 
food The coarser meats the best for sustenance How Sandow passes 
the day Influence of exercise on the mind Perils of over-exercise 152 



Neglect of Exercise as an agent and promoter of health The ambition com- 
mendable to be healthy and strong The inter-relation of body and brain 
Mr. Sandow remarkable as a human motor The secret of heavy-weight 
lifting The problem of obesity solved The skin and its functions 170 



The muscles actively concerned in the movements of the body The voluntary 
and involuntary muscles Those that are chiefly affected by muscular exer- 
cise The muscles of the upper chest, back, shoulders and arms The 
chief muscles of the lower extremity the hip, thigh, and leg 178 





Prefatory: Instructions to young would-be athletes Hints to pupils 
and instructors Preliminary free movements for rendering the 

muscles and joints supple 199 

Light-weight dumb-bell exercises 208 

Heavy-weight dumb-bell exercises 218 

Bar-bell exercises 227 

Finger lift, stone lift, and harness-and-chain lift 232 


Description of, and suggested methods of using it 235 

>endix A. Table of Food substances and their nutritive value 239 

B. Anthropometric chart of Mr. Sandow's measurements 241 

C. Table showing results of muscular development of a pupil 
of Mr. Sandow's, after three months' practice of his 

S3'stematized exercises (see photo, of pupil) *. . . 242 

D. Letter from Assistant-Inspector of Military Gymnasia for 

the British army 243 




Portrait of Mr. Sandow, in Street Attire, with Autograph Sig Frontispiece. 

Sandow at 10 years of age ^ vi 

Sandow in a series of 4 Club Studies 28 

Forearm Studies: Sandow's Flexed Arm, showing Deltoid and Serratus 

Magnus Muscles (two illustrations) 29 

Forearm Studies : Sandow's Flexed Arm, showing Biceps and Triceps 

Muscles (two illustrations) 89 

Sandow seated, showing abdominal muscles P8 

Sandow (full figure, lateral position), Arm Flexed 112 

Sandow in a series of 4 Classical Poses 113 


Athlete in the Pose of elevating the Ring-and-Ball 152 

Skeleton of Athlete (full figure) 170 

Muscles of Athlete (anterior aspect) 153 

Muscles of Athlete (posterior aspect) .*! 171 

Muscles of the Flexed Arm (anterior, posterior, and lateral aspects) 185 

Muscles of the Trunk, Shoulder, Extended Arms and Flexed Leg 186 

Muscles of the Extended Leg (anterior, posterior, and lateral aspects) 196 

Portrait of a pupil of Mr. Sandow (Mr. Martiuus Sieveking) 243 

Dr. Sargent's Anthropometric Chart of Sandow 241 


Lightweight Dumb-bells. 

Nos. 1-4. For developing the arm flexor and extensor muscles 210 

5 a. Chest-opening exercise (first position) 212 



Nos. 5 b. Chest-opening exercise (second position) \ 

6. For developing the trapezius and latissimus dorsi muscles f 

7. For increasing the mobility of the shoulder-joints f 

8 and 9. For making flexible the muscles of the wrist and forearm } 

11 a and b, 12. Lunging exercises, for developing the shoulder and 

arm muscles and those of the chest and sides 214 

13 a and b. Chest-expanding exercise 216 

14 a and b. Chest expanding exercise, with machine resistance 217 

15 a, b, and c. For strengthening the muscles of the abdomen and pre- 

venting obesity 218 

Heavy-weight Dumb-beUs. 

Nos. 18, 19. How to lift by one hand from the ground to the shoulder 280 

20, 21, 22, 23, 24. Illustrating one-handed slow- press from the shoul- 
der 22'2 

25, 27. One-hand swing-lift from the ground overhead 224 

28. Slow-lift from the ground to the shoulder , \ 

29. Snatch ring-and-ball lift from the ground overhead [ 234 

30. 31. Two-handed lift from the ground to the shoulder ) 

33, 34. Holding-out exercise at arm's length with both hands 226 

Bar-bell Exercises. 

Nos. 35, 36. Illustrating one-handed lift from the ground to the shoulder / _, 

37. One-handed snatch-lift from the ground overhead ) 

38 a, b. Bar-bell exercise for one hand 221> 

38 c and d. Bar-bell exercise for two hands 230 

39 and 39 a. Slow bar-bell lift for developing the muscles of the fore- 

arm and wrist 231 

40 a. One-handed bar-bell lift, upright position J 

Two-handed bar-bell lift to the shoulder, upright position . . . ) 

Misattanemis Exercises. 

Nos. 43. Illustrating stone-lift from the ground for one and two hands .... 233 

44. Harness-and-chain lift from (he ground 234 

45 a, b, c. Illustrating leg-machine exercises 237 

45 d and c. " " . 236 



[ N spite of the increasing value of individual life 
the distinctive mark of the civilization of 
our time little has as yet been done, on large 
lines at least, to secure for the masses of the peo- 
ple who do the work of the world that degree 
and maintenance of physical well-being implied 
in the phrase, " a sound mind in a sound body." 
For those even whom we are pleased to call " the 
flower of our population," we have systemati- 
^cally and intelligently done next to nothing in-, 
the way of physical culture. Only in recent; 
years has physiology been put on the curricu- 
lum of our public schools and the young have been enabled to 
get some inkling into the frame-work of their bodies and the 
physical conditions on which organic life is held. Whether 


this knowledge, in the main, goes beyond an appreciation of 
the necessity for air, light, food, clothing, and cleanliness, as 
conditions essential to health, may be greatly doubted. What 
is remembered of the theoretic laws of health when school- 
days are over, is, if we except the case of the comparatively 
small contingent that goes on to the study of medicine as a 
profession, of little value in the practical government of our 
bodies. Even what we have picked up about sanitation is 
generally lost before we have well entered upon manhood, or 
is effectively and grimly set at naught in our homes by the 
plumber. Where physiology has been properly taught, we 
may not all be as heathen in our knowledge of the requisites 
of health. In a few fortunate instances, the youth may know 
something of the processes of waste and renovation in the 
body ; but how those processes work to the best advantage 
and show their most beneficent results under the systematic 
exercise of the muscular system, is, admittedly, given to but 
few of us fully to appreciate or wisely to understand. Even 
the ancient Greeks, noted as they were for their fine physical 
development, grace and symmetry of form, groped largely in 
the dark regarding many things which modern physiological 
science has now made plain. This is well understood ; but, 
with the higher knowledge that modern science has brought 
us, how indifferent has been our approach to 


for which the Greek especially the Athenian athlete was 
famed. Greek and Roman alike knew, in a high degree, the 
value of bodily exercise, and in their competitive games, as 
well as in their training for war, adopted a system of physical 
education which produced wonderful results. They knew 
nothing, however, of biology and the marvel of the body's cell- 
structure, the key which, it may be said, has opened to a modern 


age the doors of its microscopic vision and revealed almost 
the secret of life itself, with its ever-recurrent motions of 
waste and renewal. They did not know, as Mr. Archibald 
Maclaren, the great English authority on Physical Education, 
has observed, ' ' that man's material frame is composed of 
innumerable atoms, and that each separate and individual 
atom has its birth, life, and death ; and that the strength of 
the body as a whole, and of each part individually, is in re- 
lation to the youth or newness of its atoms. Nor did they 
know that this strength is consequently attained by, and 
is retained in relation to, the frequency with which these 
atoms are changed, by shortening their life, by hastening 
their removal and their replacement by others ; and that 
whenever this is done by natural activity, or by suitable 
employment, there is ever an advance in size and power, 
until the ultimate attainable point of development is 
reached. They simply observed that the increased bulk, 
strength, and energy of the organ or limb is in relation to 
the amount of its employment, and they gave it employment 

This, in the main, was the sum of knowledge possessed by 
the ancients in relation to physical training ; yet unscientific 
as we now understand the term as it was, its results were 
wonderful in promoting strength and activity. Of course, in 
giving themselves so ardently to physical education, the 
Greeks and Romans must have observed much else, as the 
results of muscular exercise, that was beneficial to the youth 
in training. Though they had little knowledge of the why 
and wherefor in physiological law, they saw its gratifying 
effects and so betook themselves, with increasing national 
enthusiasm, to the exercises of the gymnasium and the cam- 
pus. The physiological action on the lungs and the blood pro- 
duced by quickened respiration, incident to regular periods 
of muscular exercise, they might not know ; but they saw 

clearly its health-giving results, on the mind as well as on the 
body, though no doubt, with them as with us, it was thetfew 
only who were qualifying themselves for the service of war 
who had the benefit of this experience in training. Interest 
in the physical well-being of any beyond those who were 
designed to bear arms, there was none in either Athens or 
Rome. Outside of that favoured class there was no public 
provision for physical education ; though there were always 
patriotic and high-spirited youth whom the thirst for dis- 
tinction drew into the competitive arena to take part in 
wrestling contests, swimming matches, chariot racing, and 
other national sports and games. With us, of recent years at 
least, physical training has gone beyond the parade-ground 
or barrack-room of the soldier. It has happily found its way 
into our schools and colleges, and, in a few of them, at any 
rate, it takes a place on the curriculum hardly inferior to 
that assigned to intellectual studies. Of late years, also, 
provision has specially been made for it by athletic clubs and 
other organizations for recreation, of a private or corporate 
character, with results that have gone far to neutralize the 
physical deterioration that in our over-competitive age is 
incident to 


Theoretically, at least, we all pay tribute to the value and 
importance of physical education. We admire physical 
strength and beauty, and recognize, though only faintly 
as yet, the inter-relation of mind and matter. We know, 
moreover, that a healthy, active brain is sadly handicapped 
by an ill-developed, sickly body. We see around us every 
day of our lives masses of our race of imperfect growth and 
unsound constitution, and almost daily the lesson comes home 
to us of the break-down of some friend or acquaintance, whose 


weakness of body could not withstand the mental and bodily 
strain in the struggle of life. Yet it is not strength, so 
much as health, that is the crying want of the time. It is 
stamina, and the power, in each of us, to do our daily work 
with the least friction and the greatest amount of comfort 
and ease. Only the few are called upon, like the great 
traveller or the soldier in a campaign, to endure protracted 
fatigue and encounter serious obstacles in nature or severities 
of climate, from which most of us shrink, and for the under- 
taking of which few of us have either the will-power or the 
courage. "A small portion only of our youth are in uni- 
form," observes the authority we have already quoted ; " but 
other occupations, other demands upon mind and body, advance 
claims as urgent as ever were pressed upon the soldier in 
ancient or modern times. From the nursery to the school, 
from the school to the college, or to the world beyond, the 
brain and nerve strain goes on continuous, augmenting, 
intensifying. Scholarships, competitive examinations, specu- 
lations, promotions, excitements, stimulations, long hours of 
work, late hours of rest, jaded frames, weary brains, jarring 
nerves all intensified and intensifying seek in modern times 
for the antidote to be found alone in physical action. These 
are the exigencies of the campaign of life for the great bulk 
of our youth, to be encountered in the schoolroom, in the 
study, in the court of law, in the hospital, and in the day and 

light visitations to court and alley and lane ; and the hard- 
ships encountered in these fields of warfare hit as hard and 
as suddenly, sap as insidiously, destroy as mercilessly, as the 

light-march, the scanty ration, the toil, the struggle, or the 
weapon of a warlike enemy. 

" Yes, it is health rather than strength that is the great 
requirement of modern men at modern occupations ; it is not 
the power to travel great distances, carry great burdens, lift 
great weights, or overcome g]*eat material obstructions ; it 


is simply that condition of body, and that amount of vital 
capacity, which shall enable each man in his place to pursue 
his calling, and work on in his working life, with the greatest 
amount of comfort to himself and usefulness to his fellow- 
men. How many men, earnest, eager, uncomplaining, are 
pursuing their avocations with the imminency of a certain 
breakdown ever before them or with pain and weariness, 
languor and depression, when fair health and full power 
might have been secured, and the labour that is of love, now 
performed incompletely and in pain, might have been per- 
formed with completeness and in comfort." 

Nor is the remedy hard to apply or likely to be at all 
doubtful in its results. It is Nature's own panacea the 
remedy, as we have seen, which the nations of antiquity, 
intelligent and highly civilized as they were, found effective 
in war as well as conducive to the health and vigour of youth. 
But physical strength was not only "the veritable God of 
antiquity ; " it was also the pride and idol of the Middle Ages. 
At the latter era, the tilting-field and tourney-ground took 
the place of the Campus Martius and the gymnasium. There 
the chivalry of the time disported itself in jousts and feats 
of horsemanship, while the village-green gave encouragement 
to wrestling matches and the varied sports which are noted 
among England's manly national games. We in the New 
World are ^inheritors of many of these playful incitements to 
bodily vigour, to which we have added others, characteristic 
of our climate and people, but all helpful in their way in the 
up-building of a lusty frame. Valuable, however, as are these 


they are only recreative exercises and, for the most part, fitfully 
indulged in. Moreover, they are confined, as a rule, to the 
school-age, and are too often dropped when the youth passes 


into the first stage of manhood. It is well known, also, that 
they develop only the lower limbs, or the lower limbs and the 
right arm, leaving without its meed of exercise the left arm and 
upper portions of the trunk. This incomplete and imperfect 
unfolding of the human body it should be the design of intel- 
ligent methods of physical training to correct and to supply 
with the needed exercises, so as to bring about a uniform and 
harmonious development. Lacking this, there is seen faulty 
growth and weak or distorted conformation in an other- 
wise healthy and well-constructed frame. 

In the following pages, the narrative of the career of an en- 
thusiast in athletic pursuits, it is the design of Mr. Sandow, as 
well as the modest purpose of the writer, to show how effective 
can be even simple methods of muscular training, when scientif- 
ically imparted, in raising the human body to a high plane of 
physical perfection, and in making it better fitted for the all- 
round, every-day work of both the manual and the intellectual 
toiler. In physical education, as in every other laudable am- 
bition, there are few royal roads to the signal and satisfactory 
attainment of one's ends. Here the sciolist, or the ill-equipped 
instructor, can of course make a show of juggling, and hump 
the muscles in indiscriminate ridges, without much reference 
to their practical uses, and with little benefit to the health, 
vigour or permanent well-being of the deluded pupil whom he 
affects to train. This, of course, is folly. In all our aims 
after physical education the great thing to bear in mind is to 
avoid ambitious and elaborate efforts at bodily training. The 
ancient Greeks and Romans would have laughed at our 
extensive array of apparatus, the appurtenances of our 
modern gymnasia on which we foolishly lavish large sums 
of money, often only to be looked at, or used for harm rather 
than for good. Another point is this : see that your training 
be not only simple but effective. In its scope let it be thorough. 
Physical education, as we have already hinted, is too often 


and incompletely directed to the accomplishment of one or two 
feats notably those wrought by the exterior muscles by the 
use of the apparatus ordinarily in vogue in our gymnasia 
without reference to the vast net-work of interior muscles, 
which have so much to do with bearing the strain of arduous 
gymnastic exercise, and have their important, set functions 
in the vital seat of the system. As these interior muscles are 
brought into harmonious play with the connected exterior 
folds of tissue, the athlete may pursue his exercises safely ; 
if they are not so brought into play, as too often happens, 
then a break-down may be expected, and dire, often, is the 
result. To obviate this, Mr. Sandow's stringent caution 
cannot be too strongly impressed, on the young gymnast 
particularly, viz., that 


where nature intended the human animal to find his habitat, 
and there to stand erect. He also wisely enjoins the use of 
dumb-bells of only 5 Ibs. in weight, for the earnest and system- 
atic manipulation of these, he affirms, is sufficient for the 
due development of all the muscles and groups of muscles ap- 
pertaining, at least, to the upper part of the body ; while by 
confining the would-be athlete to these medium-sized bells no 
risk of injury is run, and the average man can be kept in the 
perfection of health. This result will be the more assured, if 
the pupil-in-training will make himself intelligently ac- 
quainted with the anatomical arrangement and disposition of 
his muscles, and acquire some practical knowledge of physio- 
logical science. For the development of the lower limbs, Mr. 
Sandow has constructed and patented a simple apparatus 
which, he claims, is, with the light-weight dumb-bell, all that 
the athletic devotee needs for the vigorous up-building of his 
body. The mechanical contrivance referred to will be found 

admirable for exercising the adductor muscles of the leg. Its 
usefulness need hardly be pointed out, to those, at any rate, 
who have seen Mr. Sandow in what is familiarly called the 
Roman Column feat, and have observed what muscular 
strength he possesses in his lower limbs (though in the per- 
formance of this feat other muscles than those of the lower 
limbs are called more into play), which are kept in training 
partly by the use of this ingenious invention. 

Of course, the mass of humanity, even of those who do the 
leaviest part of the world's work, are not likely, whatever time 
they can give to physical culture, to become Titans in strength. 
Nature is wont to be churlish when she is expected to make 
prodigies of us all in either physical or intellectual vigour. 
Yet nature is no niggard in placing at the disposal of the race, 
at least, the raw material out of which it may fashion both 
vigorous minds and healthy bodies. The trouble is that our 
modern methods of education, for the most part, do not lead to 
mutual and concerted action in the training of these dual 
parts of our being. The mistake is the more serious when we 
realize how great is the influence on the mind of a physically 
well-developed body. Equally important is the realization of 
the truth, that a strongman, well- trained, can put his strength 
to an incalculably greater advantage than a man of like vigour 
whose physical powers have not been cultivated. Even a 
superficial perusal of the following pages can hardly fail to 
attest, and, it may be, impress this lesson. 

But the prime lesson for all, is to seek to raise the indi- 
vidual physical strength, which, unquestionably, is much lower 
for the race than it ought to be. By raising the physical 
standard in the unit, time and training will accomplish like 
results for the race. Nor are we without encouragement in 
seeking, in either unit or race, an improvement in physique ; 
for Mr. Sandow, who is what he has made himself by follow- 
ing his own simple system of muscular training, is a striking 


illustration of the power of expansion latent in the human 
frame, and which in the most of us is capable of development. 
Physically, Mr. Sandow is, of course, of more than normal girth, 
as well as of exceptional strength of chest, loin and limb ; but 
under favouring conditions of exercise and training many 
might attain to the same measure of physical development, 
while none need despair of making some gratifying approach to 
it. We repeat, however, that health, rather than muscular 
strength, should be the chief object of physical training. To 
most of us, engrossed in the ordinary avocations of life, and 
necessarily confined by the conditions of our occupations to 
sedentary habits, the main consideration must be the degree in 
which we can best perform our work, with the utmost attain- 
able freedom from friction or bodily ailment. In Mr. Sandow's 
scheme of training he properly gives much 


since, unless the heart and lungs have room for their natural 
and active play, it will matter little either how large or how 
strong may be the legs or arms. A narrow or weak chest is 
not only in itself a serious bodily defect, but it invariably 
conduces to an inferior physique. This has been well illus- 
trated by facts recently gathered by Dr. G. W. Hambleton, 
President of the Polytechnic Physical Development Society, of 
London, who has made many years' researches into the voca- 
tions which induce weak lungs and contracted chests. To the 
neglect of a proper chest development, says this authority, 
is due the large reduction from the numerical strength of the 
British army, a reduction which is not only a national weak- 
ness, but the occasion of much financial loss, in the annual 
invaliding and death of so many otherwise effective men from 
the ranks. Benefit societies and life assurance companies. 
Dr. Hambleton also computes, lose an enormous sum yearly 


from the same inciting cause, which might be largely removed, 
were the tendency of the habits and the surroundings of the 
insured such as to secure increased breathing capacity. In- 
different breathing power, and the lack of fresh air and proper 
muscular exercise, are but too certainly the prolific causes of 
disease and physical degeneracy. Well will it be when the 
masses recognize and act upon this palpable truth. Well also 
will it be when our instructors make an effort to raise the 
prevailing type of chest to a more efficient standard of 

What is further to be said on this important subject, and 
especially on the topic of vital interest to the youth-in-training 
the practical bearing of muscular exercise on the health and 
strength will be treated of in a later chapter in the technical 
division of the work, with the benefit of Mr. Sandow's own 
experience as a self-trained athlete and preceptor in the 
science of physical culture. 



SANDOW, in the ideal perfection of his physical manhood, as 
he now appears, is a highly interesting and inspiring study 
for the physiologist and the worshipper of Titanically-de- 
veloped muscle and thews. His athletic prowess ranks him 
with the heroes who are credited with doing mighty deeds in 
the Homeric age. Our modern times have produced no one, 
it is not too much to say, more perfectly equipped than is this 
young Prussian, either as an all-round athlete, or as an ex- 
ample of what musclar training can do in developing to per- 
fection the human form and achieving the classical ideal of 
physical beauty. When, but a few weeks ago, he came to the 
New World, it might have been supposed and the hyperbole 
in the present case is pardonable that the advance-guard of 


a new order of physical beings had descended on our planet. 
Not only the ubiquitous reporter, but native strong men, and 
even experienced and widely-read physiologists, waxed elo- 
quent in descanting on his points. But Eugene Sandow, on 
his advent in New York, neither fell romantically from the 
clouds nor came among us without record of his past doings 
or passport to public appreciation and favour. Young as he 
still is, he had been for four years the lion of London, the sen- 
sation of the time in the English Provinces, and was known 
to have been the hero of a hundred wrestling and gladiatorial 
contests on the Continent of Europe. In these matches he 
had beaten all competitors and won the hoarsely-shouted 
acclaim, with the more substantial awards of favour, of the 
sport-loving populace in the chief pleasure cities of the Old 


even royalty and the aristocratic youth at courts had been his 
pupils ; while his name was everywhere a household one 
among all classes of the people. Anatomists of world-wide 
fame lovingly dwelt on his wonderfully developed frame 
before delighted students in the dissecting room, and sculptors 
and artists eagerly bid against each other to secure him as a 

Nor are we without accredited testimony, from notable 
savants, as to the physical endowments of the great athlete. 
Professors Yirchow, of Berlin, Kosenheim, of Leyden, and 
Yanetti, of Florence, have expressed this opinion, that San- 
dow, from an anatomical point of view, is one of the most 
perfectly-built men in existence. This judgment has been 
authoritatively endorsed by scores of English medical men, of 
high repute in their profession, as well as by hundreds of pro- 
fessors and well-known experts in the science of physical edu- 


cation. Army surgeons and chiefs in the training schools, in 
the great English depots at Woolwich and Aldershot, have 
also given unqualified testimony to Mr. Sandow's prowess and 
to the unprecedented results of his methods of training. In 
December of last year (1892), at the gymnasium of the Eoyal 
Military 'Academy, Woolwich, Surgeon-Major Deane, of the 
Medical staff, made Sandow the interesting theme of a lecture, 
notable, not only for its inherent merit, but also from the fact 
that the great athlete was present and afforded in his person, 
to the astonished cadets, a practical object-lesson in gymnas- 
tic anatomy. 


In military circles throughout England, Mr. Sandow has 
been paid similar compliments, and has had the honour of 
having his system of physical training recommended for use 
in the training schools of the British army, through the 
agency of Colonel Fox, Inspector of Gymnasia at Aldershot, 
an enthusiastic admirer of Sandow, and a warm friend. 

Since his arrival on our shores, Sandow has been the recip- 
ient also of not a little interested scientific attention, and been 
the subject of much wonder and admiring comment. In his 
exhibitions at the New York Casino, in the Tremont Theatre, 
Boston, and at the Trocadero, Chicago, he has drawn, nightly, 
thousands, the sincerity and heartiness of whose plaudits have 
emphasized the wonder and dexterity of his feats. Nor have 
athletes, amateur and professional alike, been either backward 
or grudging in their praise ; while to anatomists and the 
medical faculty in general, Sandow appears if one may 
venture the phrase as a standing miracle. The New York 
Athletic Club have also paid him the undisguised tribute of 
admiration, one of its distinguished members having spoken 
of him as "the most perfectly-developed man he had ever 


seen." Another member of the Club remarks : "I have seen 
athletes with almost as big muscles, but never one with the 
all-round development Sandow possesses. There is nothing 
ibnormal, moreover, in his development. The nearest ap- 
)roach to a deformity, if a natural muscular development 
lay be termed a deformity, is in the abdominal muscles. 
?he like of these I have never before seen in a human being." 
Dr. Dudley A. Sargent, Director of Applied Anatomy, Phys- 
ical Training, and Personal Hygiene, at the Hemenway Gym- 
sium, Harvard University, has compiled an interesting 
inthropometric Chart of Sandow, recording accurate meas- 
irements of the different parts of the athlete's anatomy, and 
prepared a professional paper on him for the Press. In the 
latter he observes : 



He is strong, active and graceful, combining in his person the 
characteristics of Apollo, Hercules, and the ideal athlete." 
In recording these tributes to Sandow's amazing physical 
)wers and phenomenal development of muscle, it is not the 
mrpose of this volume, however, to set before the reader a 
lere panegyric, or to treat Sandow as a prodigy for exhibi- 
tion purposes only. Far otherwise, as we hope shortly to 
show, is the design of this work. 


In all ages there have been some few men possessed of 
unique physical power and great muscular development. 
Maximinius, the murderer of the Emperor Alexander Severus, 
is said to have been able to draw fully-laden carts and waggons 
without much effort, to crumble stones between his fingers, 


and tear young trees apart with his strong hands. Caesar 
Borgia is also credited with the possession of great strength, 
for it is affirmed of him that he could knock down a bullock 
with one blow of his fist. A certain centurion in the Emperor 
Augustus's body-guard, tradition has it, could, by the sole 
strength' of his arms, bear up a waggon laden with two hogs- 
heads of wine until all the wine was drawn out. It is more- 
over said of him that he could carry a mule on his back as 
easily as he could carry a child, and stop a chariot when the 
horses were in full gallop. But we need not go back for such 
manifestations of great strength to a mythological age, or 
seek for them only among the heroes of antiquity. We have 
all read, or heard, of the Venetian athlete who, though small 
of stature, could break the thickest shank-bone of oxen upon 
his knees ; of the German, Le Feur, in the sixteenth century, 
who could carry a pipe of wine on his shoulders ; of John 
Bray, the Cornishman, who could carry the carcass of an ox 
a furlong ; of Libeski, a Polander, who at Constantinople, in 
1581, lifted a piece of wood which twelve men had enough to 
do to raise from the ground and bore on his breast a mighty 
stone which ten men had, with much effort, rolled thither. 
Nor do we forget the Scottish Highlander who, not long 
ago, used to uproot young oaks from the earth, cast Highland 
steers, and harnessing himself with horse-breeching raise a 
ton weight ; or Topham, the strong man of the last century, 
who, with the aid of leathern straps passed over his shoulders, 
with chains attached, could lift three hogsheads of water, 
weighing 1836 Ibs., and support on his body four men, each 
weighing fourteen stone. 


The ancient classics give us well-nigh a surfeit of mighty 
heroes, whose deeds have been sung in noble epic or recited in 


stirring story. If many of these deeds are mythical, the 
classical student has not the less enjoyed the literary qualities 
in the story and the story-teller ; nor have daring spirits, in 
the ages since, failed to find in both a stimulus to the ac- 
complishment of feats of like prowess. In the swing and 
spirit of their telling, ardent natures have often caught fire, 
and done many a noble deed by emulating the spirit which even 
the recital of noble deeds inspire. England's battles have been 
won, it is a familiar saying, by the muscle-training which her 
youth acquire on the playgrounds of her great Public Schools. 
What they drink in, as with their mother's milk, of deeds of 
renown in their own noble history, as well as in the tradition 
of that of other nations Greek, Roman, Teuton, and Scan- 
dinavian may well fire the young heart to deeds of high em- 
prise and great valour. 

No lustre is so great, we know, as that which gilds the 
doing of a great deed. Back, however, of the doing of it, must 
be the courage which a consciousness of the ability to do the 
deed inspires. In this lies the moral value of physical train- 
ing. We do not say, of course, that the intrepid mind waits 
to reason before throwing itself into the breach in the moment 
of jeopardy or peril. But is it not folly to hazard life in the 
performance of an act for the doing of which one has not the 
physical power, though one may have the courage ? The 
man who is himself no swimmer will but court his own fate 
should be seek to save another from drowning. He who is 
most likely to stop a runaway horse in a crowded thorough- 
fare is the man who has both the muscle and the pluck to risk 
life in the effort. Nor is it safe to say that emergencies are 
infrequent for the instant 


The student of martial history, at least, will not need to be 
2 17 

reminded of this. Turn the dial of time back a few hundred 
years, and he will recall how often the fortunes of b&ttle 
depended upon the deft prowess of a single arm. Nor is the 
fact less true of our own time. One can hardly go into the 
thronged streets of our cities, or board a crowded steamboat, 
on pleasure bent, without being confronted with an emergency 
which may call our whole strength and courage into instant 
action. Mr. Sandow's extraordinary physical powers may be 
our own possession in but a faint degree ; yet that they are 
that is an acquisition of no mean moment, for to what trained 
power we have we may some day owe our life. Is the argu- 
ment without force as a plea for compulsory physical training ? 
Even in spite of himself, Mr. Sandow has become what is 
termed a professional athlete. To that fact, both in this 
country and in England, he doubtless owes much of his fame. 
But it is due to Mr. Sandow to say that he long resisted 
the clamour that he should exhibit his prowess for money and 
pursue professional gymnastics as a vocation. Not that, per se, 
the vocation is objectionable ; but that, at the outset, he was 
under no compulsion to seek it as a profession, and was brought 
up in a rooted dislike to appear in public as a salaried exhibi- 
tor. The attraction to him was the enjoyment he took in 


as an amateur. While indulging his tastes, as in an idle 
pastime, he broke, as will presently be seen, with his father, 
and that circumstance, coupled, possibly, with the fascinating 
glamour of the public arena, drew him at last into the profes- 
sion. Like the high-minded and generous man he is, however, 
he cares little for the pecuniary rewards of his work. Had 
he wanted merely to make money, he would no doubt have 


taken to the pugilist's golden career ; but this, we know, was 
always abhorrent to him. 

When, in process of time, Mr. Sandow came to know his own 
power, we can well imagine the pleasure he took in his con- 
tinued muscular training. Modest as he is, and inclined, with 
the instincts of a gentleman, to repress rather than assert him- 
self, we can hardly doubt that, at times, when he scores a great 
triumph, he takes honest pleasure in looking himself over with 
the lust of the eye and in the pride of life. With his magnif- 
icent physique, he would hardly be human if he did not. But 
his normal characteristic, professionally and privately, is self- 
effacement ; and though reliant and confident in his powers, 
he always bears himself modestly. Even when smarting from 
some provocation, or when a rival contestant unduly draws 
upon his courtesy and good-nature, he invariably places him- 
self under rigid restraint. Only twice is he known, the occa- 
sions of which will afterwards be stated, to have departed from 
what, considering his strength, will be deemed a merciful 

Having regard to the interest of the subject, the earlier 
portion of the following pages will be confined to telling the 
tale of Mr. Sandow's public career. In chronicling the story, 
it is proper to say, that only indisputable facts will be set 
forth ; and it is the desire of Mr. Sandow, as it is that of the 
writer, that no exaggeration shall be indulged in and no 
colour given to the narrative beyond that which the facts them- 
selves warrant. This, it is hoped, will be deemed to have been 
rigidly adhered to, in dealing with incidents which, in London 
especially, became the subject of much journalistic controversy 
in relation to Mr. Sandow and his defeated rivals. . One thing 
may be said in this connection, and it is itself a guarantee of 
good faith, as well as good taste in the subject-character of 
the book, that Mr. Sandow has never made a claim for himself 
to which he had not a right, or which the facts themselves 


do not furnish the proof. After this fashion, and in the 
spirit we have indicated, we proceed, in the chapters which 
follow, to unfold the life-history which, with some misgiving* 
as to our ability to do justice to the theme, we set out to 




A PERSONALITY so marked as that of Sandow, with such 
power latent in him, both of will and purpose, as would make 
of him the character he has become, presents, even in youth, 
many aspects of view, the presentation of which can hardly 
fail to be of interest to the reader. It is a trifle tedious, how- 
ever, as most will admit, to dwell in minute detail on the 
early life of men who have subsequently made their mark in 
the world. We shall not fall into this error in treating of 
Mr. Sandow's youth- time, for all we might say would be to re- 
peat the aphorism, doubtless in his case with variations, that 
" the child is father to the man." If we enlarged upon this 
topic, it would be to remark that while from his earliest years 
young Sandow had a fondness for athletics and exercised his 
muscles, even turtiyely when he was denied the opportunity to 


do so openly, he never dreamed of reaching the perfection of 
bodily development and muscular power he was afterwards 
to attain, or of becoming renowned on two hemispheres for 
mighty deeds of physical agility and strength. He had, 


though, as yet, the field of his youthful tests of strength was a 
modest one, and immature were the powers which one day 
were to do great feats. In his ambition to train himself, he 
aimed at being thorough rather than showy, and, as he has 
counselled many a pupil in athletics since, 


The phrase, in Mr. Sandow's mouth, is worth dwelling upon, 
for, as he earnestly and persistently avows, it is the key to 
success as a gymnast. The difference is great, as every 
learner knows or ought to know, between going through 
certain exercises in a perfunctory and mechanical manner, 
and putting the muscles to the strain by concentrating the 
mind and will-power upon the manipulation of the weights, 
or whatever muscular exercise is being attempted. Exercise, 
he of course also maintains, should be systematic, persistent, 
and thorough. Without this, and disregarding his chief in- 
junction, to put mind into your work, anything like proficiency 
cannot be reached. How assiduously and laboriously Sandow 
has himself trained, few men who have not some time or other 
equipped themselves for competitive contests can know. For 
years, as we have already observed, he did this for the love of 
it, and without thought that in the future he should turn his 
training into an arduous but profitable vocation. This fact, in 
telling the story of the athlete's early life, we may have occasion 


to repeat, for Mr. Sandow is fond of referring to it with his 
young pupils as an encouragement when they are apt to weary 
of assiduous exercise and the toil it entails. But this and 
other matters of practical interest we shall come to in the 
narrative of the life, upon which we now enter. 

Eugene Sandow was born at Konigsberg, Prussia, on the 
2d of April, 1867. He is consequently now only in his 
twenty-seventh year. As a child he was healthy and well- 
formed, but there was nothing of the prodigy about him, 
physically or mentally ; nor were either of his parents of any- 
thing but normal physique. Up to his fifteenth year, indeed, 
young Eugene was of slight build and rather delicate consti- 
tution. His father, like all patriotic Germans, had served 
some five years in the army, but took to commerce as his life- 
vocation, and, in time, became a prosperous jeweller and 
dealer in precious stones and metals. This worthy citizen of 
Konigsberg is now dead, as is his wife, Mr. Sandow's loving 
and devoted mother. A half-brother, who also is only of aver- 
age physique, is a professor in the University of Gottingen. 
Sandow himself was an earnest student, and in his school-boy 
years was deemed a fair, all-round scholar, though he had 
a preference for mathematical studies, in which he was well 
versed and won honours . Contemporary with his college-days, 
he devoted himself with great ardour to all forms of gymnastic 
exercises and athletics. There he stood upon what was now 
to be commanding ground, for so successful was his training 
that he soon distinguished himself in all sports, and feats of 
agility and strength. In these he outrivalled even his senior 
schoolmates. He loved, beyond anything, to steal off to the 
gymnasium and the circus, and in the latter, with youthful 
but wayward ambition, longed to test his strength 



The circus was, however, unhallowed ground with his good 
and honest parents, and, seeing their son drawn with uncov- 
enanted bonds to the glittering arena, they put the place for 
him under interdict. This was a sore rebuff to young Eugene, 
but it led to the redoubling of his own home-efforts to become 
redoubtable as an athlete. 

About this time young Sandow's holidays fell due, and his 
father, being in good circumstances and fond of his boy, 
who had been diligent in his studies, gave him the treat 
of taking him with him on a visit to Borne. Arriving at 
Rome, what the youthful scholar had imbibed of the classics 
led him to take keen interest in the art treasures of the 
Eternal City, particularly in the statuary, representing the 
gods and heroes of antiquity. Under the local influences of 
the place, his imagination repeopled the Corso and the Colos- 
seum with the stalwart deities of Roman mythology and he 
seemed to see, as in a vision, the great pageant of a past day, 
with mighty concourses of people applauding their laurel- 
crowned favourites in the wrestler's arena. But, practically, 
he liked most to frequent the art-galleries, and there to hang 
about and admire the finely-sculptured figures of heathen 
deities and the 


or wrestler in the throes of a life or death struggle. With 
the inquiring mind of youth, he asked his father why our 
modern race had nothing to show in physical development 
like those lusty men of the olden time ? Had the race deteri- 
orated, or were the figures before him only the ideal creations 
of god-like men ? His father's reply was a disappointment to 
him, for he had to admit that the race had suffered physical 
decline, and even in its choicest individual specimens had fallen 


grievously from its once mighty estate. Later ages, with 
their ignoble ideals, and the sordid habits and fashionable 
indulgences of the race, had wrought their due havoc a havoc 
which the father took occasion to impress on the youth's mind, 
and the admonition was not lost. Eugene, contrasting his 
own slight figure with the mighty thews and graceful 
forms of the statued heroes about him, conceived the idea to 
train his body to the utmost pitch of perfection, and so ap- 
proach, if he did not attain to, the 


^Returning to his home, in the high ardour of emulation, he 
devoted himself, more assiduously than ever, to muscular 
training and the intelligent study of his frame, its capacities 
and functions. Every opportunity he took advantage of that 
seemed to further him in his work and brought him nearer 
the goal of his purpose. Many and furtive, at this time, were 
his resorts to the circus-tent and the wrestler's arena. But 
these were forbidden indulgences, and though he tried hard to 
give heed of his parent's injunctions, his ruling passion was 
often too strong for him. So all-impelling was his ambition 
at this period, that we find him repeatedly running away from 
home, and as repeatedly and ignominiously being brought 

The battle was of long continuance between young San- 
dow's inclination and his duty to his parents. It ended at last 
in his going to the University of Gottingen, where, however, 
he was permitted a measure of indulgence in physical train- 
ing. Winning his way, with the exception of the limitations 
imposed upon him, he pursued his academic studies with zeal 
and energy, which so commended him in the eyes of his 
parents that they permitted his proceeding to Brussels to 
study anatomy. This, it may be said in passing, was not the 


profession his parents had designed for him. The family were 
of the Lutheran faith, and its heads had hoped that Eugene, 
with his gifts and prospects, might take to the ministry. But 
in this they were disappointed, though they were not loth to 
see their son turn to the healing art as a profession. Ere long, 
however, they had a new disappointment, for Eugene, at the 
medical school, confined himself almost entirely to the ana- 
tomical course. Here the reader will, once more, perceive the 
undeviating bent of the young athlete's purpose. Yet most 
valuable, it must be said, was the intimate knowledge he 
gained of the structure and 


It was the instruction he most needed in pursuing his training 
as an athlete, and almost beyond price has he since found the 
knowledge he then acquired. Meanwhile, it gave new stimulus 
and a fresh direction to his labours in muscle-culture, and 
brightened and widened the outlook on his cherished athletic 

Up to this time, though young Sandow had achieved no 
inconsiderable local fame as a skilled gymnast and wrestler, 
he had had no thought of indulging his tastes beyond the 
limits of the amateur. A quarrel just then with his father 
altered the condition of things with the young lad, and con- 
fronted him with a grave crisis in his life. His parent, seek- 
ing to curb Eugene's infatuation for his favourite pastime, cut 
off his money-allowance and threatened him with other 
embarrassing deprivations. The result did not meet the fond 
father's expectations. It threw the high-spirited lad on his 
own resources, and only too apparent were the resources 
available. The circus and the theatre became more than ever 
his resorts, and not unwilling, as we may well imagine, were 
his feet to go thither. Luck and his skill threw prize-money 


in his way, and now and then he earned a little by hiring him- 

f out to sculptors and artists as a model. 

Only precarious, however, was at this time young Eugene's 
leans of livelihood, and soon he had seriously to debate with 
limself how or where else he could make money. In debat- 
ig the question, he bethought himself of a quasi -professional 

sit to Holland. Before he left Brussels, Sandow made the 

juaintance of a well-known and noted professor of athletics, 
rho, at various periods and in different countries, was to figure 

exhibitions with him. 


This was Professor Atilla, who, at the time we are writing of, 
mducted a gymnastic training school at Brussels. Sandow's 
itroduction to this expert instructor in physical education 
ras due to the enthusiasm of some pupils of Atilla, who had 
lught sight of the young Prussian wrestler, entering a caf6 
opposite the gymnasium, while they were themselves receiv- 
ing a lesson. Sandow was induced by his eager friends, who 
knew his skill, to bring himself to the knowledge of " the 
Professor " by exhibiting some of the more wonderful feats 
they had known him to perform. The exhibition proved an 
astonishment to Atilla, for he found that the youth not only 
surpassed all his pupils in dexterity and strength, but could do 
many things which the master was himself unable to perform. 
. On the other hand, the partnership which grew out of this 
chance encounter was, while it lasted, of service to Sandow, 
for the latter learned something from the expert which was 
afterwards added to his own repertoire. Together, the two 
paid professional visits to Eotterdam, Antwerp, and other towns 
close by, and later on returned with the modest gains of their 
labour to Brussels. They also found at Leyden, among the 
students at the University, interested and well-paying pupils, 
to whom the athletes, for a time gave lessons. 




WITH no decided views as to where, after parting with 
Atilla, he would be likely to find employment, Sandow found 
the occasion urgent to go in search of it, for he was again en- 
tirely dependent upon his own resources. In passing from 
his native Prussia to Belgium, he left behind him not only 
those who knew and loved him, but, to some extent also, the 
interest actively felt throughout the Fatherland in wrestling 
and all manner of gymnastics. To the young adventurer the 
situation was more serious when he had to pass from Belgium 
into Holland, because this took him still further from hope of 
engagement, where he was known as an athlete, besides, as 
we have seen, having now to get along without his father's 
allowance. In proceeding to Amsterdam, he was venturing 



Sarony Photo. 

his barque on an entirely unknown sea. He as yet knew no 
one in the city, though he possessed the pleasant manners and 
frank, open countenance of one ere long certain to make 
friends. He had, moreover, youth and hope on his side, and, 
by this time, had acquired remarkable strength, with a varied 
though miscellaneous experience of circuses, theatres, and 
shows. At the chief theatres he sought employment as a 
strongman, but strongman exhibitions, he was brusquely, 
almost rudely told, were not then in vogue ; while the mana- 
ger of the "Paleis voor Volksvly t " would not pay Sandow 
the humble ten guilders ($4) a night the young athlete asked 
for his services. At this juncture, when fortune most frowned, 
his worthy father once more besought him to return home ; 
but, though without prospects, and in almost extreme need of 
money, he refused. Depressed and crestfallen as he was, 
with his hotel bill in arrears and not a little of his effects in 
pawn, he yet had confidence in himself : in any case, he could 
not brook the idea of acknowledging his life, so far, a failure. 


One day, when his store of money was quite gone, save a 
mere pittance in his pocket, a daring scheme entered his head, 
which, he thought, would be a novel mode, at least, of adver- 
tising himself, and might lead to his securing the employ- 
ment which he now sorely needed. He was, as we have said, 
unknown in Amsterdam, and had had no chance afforded him 
to show his powers. What he did was to take a cabman into 
confidence and arrange with him to drive him round the city 
some morning between midnight and dawn. His purpose 
was to visit all the weight-lifting machines scattered through- 
out the town, outside the closed caf^s, and wreck each in 
turn by a strong pull at the handle a feat which only a very 
powerful man like young Sandow could do. Dependent upon 


the good-nature of the cabman, not only to keep his counsel 
as to what he intended to do, but for the necessary coin to put 
in the slot of each machine, he set out and only too well ac- 
complished his purpose. In the morning, when the city was 
astir, every passer along the streets carried the news to the 
police- stations, and soon bulletins were issued by the news- 
papers, saying that the city had been visited over night by a 
gang of ruffian marauders, who had, by their combined 
strength so the account ran dismantled and wrecked every 
weight-lifting machine. The whole city wondered at the 
deed, and for days it was the subject of universal talk. The 
authorities offered a thousand guilders reward for the discovery 
and capture of the miscreants. Every citizen, and of course 
every habited guardian of the city's nocturnal peace, had each 
his own theory of how the town came to be so invaded and the 
machines gutted. In time, the town breathed freely again ; 
the machines were repaired ; and the inexplicable deed was 
about forgotten. A second time, and, after a little, a third 
time, the city woke to a repetition of the machine- wrecking 


After the second of the wrecking exploits, it was of course 
not easy to guard against surprisal, for by this time the police 
were officiously on the qui vive, while every porter and night- 
watchman was but too anxious to obtain the civic reward. 
The cabman, with Sandow, had almost completed thfe third 
night's round when the latter was espied by a porter at one 
of the cafs just as he was giving the wrench to a machine 
which threw it out of gear and broke the springs. The porter, 
realizing the apparent strength of the nightly depredator, 
kept at a respectful distance from the strongman, but having 
the reward of the authorities before his eyes was not willing 


to lose the chance of bagging his game. Sandow, on the other 
hand, having sufficiently stirred up the city to interest in his 
nocturnal acts, was but too ready to reap his own peculiar 
reward and inwardly was not averse from arrest. 
The porter, meanwhile, having rushed to the nearest police- 
ice, brought with him a posse of constables, who collectively 
>ounced upon young Sandow, who suffered himself to be 
taken to the station. There he was catechised by the sergeant- 
in-charge as to who were his confederates in crime, for no one 
imagined that the machines had -been wrecked by a single 
pair of arms. Sandow's protestation that he alone did the 
deed was received at first as a joke. Again and again was 
he interrogated on the point and threatened with handcuffs 
and imprisonment. He, of course, continued to make but 
one answer, and as its possible truth began to dawn on the 
police they treated him with more politic consideration. At 
this, Sandow, with a nonchalant air, repeated his protest 
against arrest, for, as he naively observed, he had been merely 
exercising his arms, and in the slot of each machine had 
honestly paid the toll. Presently, a commissary of police 
appeared on the scene, and, with amazement and curiosity, 
heard Sandow's account of the affair and his demurral to the 
indignity of arrest. The comic aspect of the scene was 
reached when the culprit gave indisputable evidence on the 
biggest of the constables that he was the strong man he 
claimed to be, to the amusement of the inspector and the 
crowd that by this time had gathered in and about the police 

After this amusing exhibition of strength, which quite won 
the heart of the old commissaire, Sandow was released on his 
own recognizances, promising to appear should action by the 
authorities be pressed, which, we may say here, was not the 
case. On the contrary, the young athlete became the lion of 
the town, and he and the cabman were escorted in triumph to 


the hotel where Sandow lodged, which has since become a 
great resort owing to its connection with the morning's inci- 
dents. There the entire staff of the establishment was for 
hours kept busy drawing beer for the enthusiastic populace 
that had followed Sandow and were talking in hilarious glee 
over the affair. A suite of fine rooms, in exchange for his 
previous humble domicile, was offered our hero by the hotel- 
proprietor, who had caught the contagion of excitement from 
the crowd and was eager to show his gratitude to Sandow for 
bringing him such welcome and unlooked-for custom. This 
custom, thanks to the now notorious athlete, was not evanes- 
cent, but grew daily in volume, especially while Sandow made 
the city his home ; and the hotel-proprietor, it may be re- 
marked, emphatically dates the founding of his fortune from 
the day on which the incident transpired which we have just 

At the theatre, it may be added, which had refused Sandow 
a salary of ten guilders a night, he now obtained a prolonged 
engagement at twelve hundred guilders a week ! 


The success of the machine-wrecking hero at Amsterdam 
brought together again Atilla and his quondam partner and 
pupil. Together they resumed for a time their itinerant ex- 
hibitions and afterwards crossed over to London, where Atilla 
had secured an engagement at the Crystal Palace, Sydenham. 
There Atilla, shortly after appearing, had the ill-luck to meet 
with an accident on the stage, which terminated his engage- 
ment and threw both himself and Sandow out of employment. 
Shortly after this, Sandow drifted across to Paris, where 
dame Fortune again became fickle and for a while treated him 
churlishly. He made repeated but fruitless efforts to get an 
engagement, and failing in that became exigently hard up. 


His ill-luck continued for some weeks, and only a forced 
resort to the pawn-shop enabled him to exist. To Sandow's 
surprise it was even difficult to hire himself out as a model. 
)ne day, after meeting with only mortifying rebuffs, the 
roung athlete called upon a professor of anatomy, at the 
Lcadernie des Beaux Arts. To the professor he made his 
sual request for employment and was met with the now 
familiar answer, that " just then he had no need of a model." 
ipatient at the stereotyped answer, he urged that he was a 
trong man and physically well- developed, adding, pathet- 
ically, that he would be thankful for even a day or two's en- 
gagement, that he might be fed. The professor, not heeding 
the appeal, or being in a hurry to get back to his class, turned 
ascend the stair, leaving Sandow, in chagrin, to take him- 
3lf off. But the latter was not thus to be got rid of, at least 
rithout giving the learned gentleman a practical proof of his 
strength. As the doctor, who was a large man, was mount- 
ing the stair, Sandow caught him by the legs, and with an 
sy, effortless movement he put him down at his side. 
"Mon Dieu," said Esculapius, " you are indeed a phenome- 
ion ! " 

" Yes," rejoined the athlete, " and if you give me a chance 
rou will see what else I can do." 

The doctor now invited Sandow to his class-room, where he 
exhibited his figure and some of his notable feats before an 
enthusiastic band of students, winning the deafening applause 
)f all present, with a purse, to which each pupil contributed, 
mtaining two hundred francs. For several months, Sandow 
mtinued to exhibit at the Academy as a model, and also 
found remunerative work in giving private lessons as an 

About this time, Sandow made the acquaintance of a strolling 
circus-man named Francois, with whom he made a lengthened 
tour with a pantomime show, Sandow contributing no little 


of the attraction by his gymnastic feats and unrivalled power 
as a wrestler. These exhibitions proving remunerative, 
Sandow finally embraced them as a profession, meeting hence- 
forth an almost unbroken run of luck. 


THE tour in France with the pantomimist, Francois, was, as 
we have said, a remunerative one, and naturally so, for the 
play in which Sandow and his quondam partner appeared had 
many elements of interest and novelty. As a pantomime, it 
amused the people ; while the combination of athlete and 
harlequin introduced a new feature in entertainments of the 
kind, which astonished as well as delighted the audiences that 
were drawn nightly to witness them. The pantomime was en- 
titled L'Afficheur (the bill-sticker). It was composed as well 
as partly performed by Sandow and Francois, who appeared 
under the stage-designation of " les frdres Rijos." Its orig- 
inal character may be apprehended from the circumstance 
that Fran9ois, who personated harlequin, was dressed as a 
huge doll, which Sandow juggled and tossed about the stage, 
threw over walls, and pitched in at windows, with a freedom 


which for a time disguised from the audience the fact that it 
was a living man, and not a stage property, that was being 
shuttlecocked about. Amusingly labelled, harlequin was also 
thrown against walls, to which he clung, exhibiting, in ingen- 
iously contrived changes of dress, the pictorial embellishments 
of the bill-sticker's art. The performance, though an amusing 
farce, gave opportunity for the display of Sandow's extraor- 
dinary dexterity and strength, and served well the purposes for 
which it had been temporarily taken up. From France Sandow 
and Francois passed on to Italy, where, at Rome, they met 
with continued success as they adapted the pantomime to the 
tastes and local circumstances of that country. With the 
company was an artist whom Sandow had known in Holland 
at the time of his machine-breaking escapade, and an evening 
was devoted to the giving of a benefit to this old confrere. 
To give eclat to the evening's performance, the artist begged 
Sandow to exhibit his prowess in some feats of strength other 
than those in which he was accustomed to appear. Anxious 
to favour his friend, he readily complied with the request, 
though he was without apparatus, which had to be borrowed 
or extemporised. After a little searching about, the neces- 
sary appurtenances were got together. Impressed into ser- 
vice, besides a set of dumb-bells, were a couple of pairs of rail- 
way-car wheels, with their axles ; yet, with this motley appa- 
ratus, Mr. Sandow not only contributed his own share to the 
evening's entertainment, but achieved a triumph which threw 
into the shade the other performances of the occasion. So 
signal was his success, that the director of the local theatre 
called upon him to offer him a very liberal sum if he would 
abandon the pantomime and engage himself as a wrestler and 
performer of feats of strength. This he afterwards did, and 
won a name for himself in the Eternal City for his perform- 
ances, which attracted King Humbert and the athlete-loving 
members of his court. He was, however, not unmindful of his 


partner, Frangois, for he shared with him the profits of his 
exhibitions until he left the city. 

While at Rome, Sandow had an opportunity of enhancing 
his fame as a wrestler, for in this capacity he had been giving 
lessons to the titled youth of the Italian court, as well as win- 
ing their admiration for his powers as an athlete. This came 
about in consequence of a challenge he received from Barto- 
letti, a notable Eoman wrestler, not unknown in America, 
who offered to stake 5000 francs on the result of a wrestling 
match with Sandow. The challenge was accepted, and the 
issue was a surprise to all Rome, for Sandow's victory was an 
easy one and enabled him to put the prize-money in his pocket. 
On the morrow of the contest, the surprised winner was made 
the recipient, after the fashion of the South, of innumerable 
bouquets, with other souvenirs and presents, including many 
applications from those seeking to become pupils of Sandow 
in learning the art of athlete and wrestler. In a short time 
he had more pupils than he wanted, though the aggregate 
fees were welcomed in the improvement of his finances. 
From Rome, Sandow at length passed to Florence, whither 
his reputation had preceded him, and there he met with equal 
success, and was presented by the Athletic Club of the famous 
art city with a handsome gold medal in commemoration of 
his visit. 

Subsequently, Sandow visited Venice and Milan, where he 
won further honours with the golden rewards of his work. At 
the latter city he received a new challenge from Bartoletti, 
who, it seems, was not satisfied that he had been fairly beaten, 
or was at least unwilling, without further trial of strength, 
to accept defeat. Sandow, good-naturedly humored the great 
wrestler, and the new match took place at the Theatre 
d'Alverne, with like results. Sandow again was victor. A 
new contestant at this time came upon the scene, named Sali, 
a man who was acknowledged to be the best wrestler in Italy, 


and had won repute in Australia, where he defeated every one 
of his opponents. The moment was an auspicious one for a 
trial of strength between an Italian and a Prussian, for Ger- 
many and Italy had just then joined the Triple Alliance, and 
the political movements of the time invested the match with 
an international importance. Sali, moreover, was known to 
be an ugly customer in a contest, a man who would do his 
utmost to beat his opponent, as well as to maintain the fame 
of his country. Public excitement rose to a high pitch over 
the match, and the gymnasium of Milan put up the money 
for the stakes. The day arranged for the contest came, but 
the sequel was not varied in Sali's case, though he stood well 
up to his work, and the match lasted over an hour. The 
honours once more fell to Sandow, who came off victor and 
received an enthusiastic ovation, with the usual accompani- 
ment of presents of fruit, flowers, and bon-bons. 

Subsequently, Sandow beat, in five minutes, Milo, a pupil 
of Sali's, and then proceeded to Venice, where he bought a 
villa, with the design of enjoying a brief vacation. Here he 
was induced, however, to forego his well-earned rest, and to 
issue a challenge, this time to any two wrestlers, whom he 
(Sandow) undertook to tackle at once, the stakes being 3000 
francs. A number of would-be competitors came forward, 
attracted by the daring challenge ; but two only remained in 
the field to try their luck against the redoubtable Prussian. 
Their names were Sarini and Vocoli. Notwithstanding that 
the occasion was the first one in which Sandow had ventured 
to wrestle with two men at once, ten minutes sufficed for the 
contest, for within that brief space both athletes were on their 

Elated at his success, and being in admirably good form, 
Sandow now published a challenge, inviting three wrestlers 
to try their skill against him in one match ; the rules of the 
contest being that, as each man is successively thrown, he is 


considered out of the ring ; though, until there is a fall, all 
may come upon the challenger at once. His three former 
opponents, Bartoletti, Sarini, and Vocoli, accepted the chal- 
lenge, and, as may be imagined, great was the excitement 
which the proposed match evoked. It will appear tame, as 
well as the merest commonplace, to chronicle the result; 
which varied in no whit from that of the preceding matches, 
though Sandow had an unusually hard struggle of it to wrest 
victory from the grip of his triple opponents. The match 

sted an hour and a half and was a triumph such as Sandow 
light well be proud of. Against professionals of so great re- 
mte, no wrestler has hitherto been known to contend, in a 
latch three against one, and to come off conqueror. 

So notable a contest could hardly be won without its being 
widely talked of and deservedly praised. For a time it was 
the chief topic in the German and Italian Press, and the theme 
of comment in all the Mediterranean cities and towns. It 
took place just at the period when the late German Emperor, 
Frederick William, was at San Eemo under treatment for his 
throat the malady which was soon to deprive the Fatherland 
of its loved monarch. Sandow's renown naturally reached 
the young king's ears, and Frederick sent a message to Venice 
commanding the presence at San Remo, of the Konigsberg 
athlete. The command, we need hardly say, was obeyed with 
eager alacrity, and Sandow had the honour of giving an ex- 
hibition of his prowess before the Kaiser and his royal consort. 
The Emperor, though sadly stricken now with his fatal mal- 
ady, was himself a man of much strength, and naturally took 
pride in witnessing the feats which his athletic fellow-country- 
man had to show him. With an old-time pride in his own 
powers, Frederick took a complete pack of playing-cards and 
with a strong, quick turn of the wrists tore them in two. It 
might have been courtly etiquette to leave the Emperor to the 
enjoyment of the pride he felt in the work of his hands ; but 


some one informed His Majesty that Sandow could beat him 
at his own trick, and it was with pleased surprise, and with 
no admixture of envy, that he witnessed two packs torn apart 
by the renowned athlete. After witnessing several other as- 
tonishing feats, the Kaiser took a ring of great value from 
his finger, which he had worn for eighteen years, and with 
frank heartiness presented it to Sandow, telling him, at the 
same time, that he was an honour to their common Father- 
land, and that he could desire nothing more than that his army 
were made up of many such types of fine physical manhood. 
He added, with touching pathos, that, to possess Sandow's 
perfection of bodily health and strength, he would gladly ex- 
change places with him, were it in his power to do so. He 
also expressed the hope that he might live to see Sandow his 
guest 'at Berlin. The ring, which he then placed on his sub 1 
ject's finger, is of beautiful French enamel, . encircled with 
brilliants, with the initial F, and a crown over it composed of 
diamonds. Sandow naturally prizes it as the most cherished 
of his souvenir treasures. 

After this memorable incident in the great athlete's career, 
Sandow returned to Venice, where he had an encounter with 
a wrestler, named Muller, whose unprofessional brutality in 
&, match which ensued, gave Sandow occasion long to remem- 
ber him with keenest dislike. He was, in truth, a terrible 
antagonist ; being known to resort to infamous tactics such 
as seeking to break his opponent's finger or limb to get the 
better of his adversary and win a match, even through a foul. 
Sandow, though aware of Muller's vicious habit, was not loth 
to try odds with him, and the match was duly brought on, 
before an immense and highly wrought-up audience. Sandow 
entered the arena and confronted his adversary with his usual 
pluck and coolness. After some minutes' struggling and a 
few feints, Muller saw that he was not likely to throw his op- 
ponent and he then attempted to play his old game, which 


Sandow, for the time being, foiled. Muller persisted, how- 
ever, in his tactics, and endeavoured to get Sandow at a dis- 
advantage, seizing hold of wrist, arm or limb, in turn, with 
the evident design of breaking or disabling it. - But: Sandow 
was wary, and for a further while succeeded in checkmating 
is purpose, until, with both hands, Muller fastened upon 
iandow's right forearm and tried to snap it at the wrist, and 
it the same time, with a supreme effort, he forced two' fingers 
f his right hand an inch deep into Sandow's flesh, crushing 
.e veins till they burst, and causing him intense pain. This 
stardly act, so foully committed, caused Sandow, for the 
rst and only time in his life, when wrestling, to lose his tem- 
per, though not his presence of mind. With all his strength, 
Sandow, by an alert movement, jerked back his left arm, and, 
closing upon Muller, threw both arms round his body, between 
the waist and the chest, and drew his opponent towards him 
in a very bear's-hug until Muller's face blackened and blood 
gushed from his mouth, and he fell upon the floor as if he 
were dead. The defence was the act of a minute ; but it left 
Muller, not dead, but with four broken ribs, from which it 
took him a long time to recover ; while Sandow was disabled 
for four months, the veins being torn in his arm, and the 
nerve-fibres greatly lacerated. Even to-day, though five years 
have passed, Sandow speaks of the circumstance with keenest 
regret and no little reticence ; though it was Muller's own 
perfidy that provoked Sandow to administer the merited, but 
unrestrained chastisement. 

It was at Venice, shortly after his recovery, that Sandow 
made the acquaintance of the English artist, Aubrey Hunt, 
E. A., whose admiration of the fine physical development of 
the great athlete led him to paint the now well-known picture 
of Sandow in the Coliseum at Eome, in the character of a 
gladiator. It was from this artist that Sandow first heard of 
Sampson's nightly challenges at the Westminster Aquarium 


to any athlete who would come forward and do the feats per- 
formed by himself or his pupil, Cyclops. On the evening of. 
the day Sandow was apprised of the challenge, he was already 
on his way to London, with what results if the reader is not 
yet aware of them the next chapter will disclose. 



SANDOW was in his twenty-third year when he came to Lon- 
don, attracted, as we have seen, by the rather braggart chal- 
lenges of Samson on behalf of himself and his pupil, Cyclops. 
Within a couple of days after his arrival, the young Prussian 
athlete became the subject of as much public talk as if he 
were some royal personage whom the clubs, the privileged 
class and society in general had agreed to treat as the lion 
of the season. This was due to Sandow's immediate and 
enthusiastically-hailed triumph over Samson's protege, includ- 
ing the winning of a 100 stake at the Royal Aquarium, 
Westminster, after a contest of unprecedented excitement and 
thrilling interest. Something, no doubt, was due, also, to 
the suddenness with which the then unknown strongman had 
alighted upon the world's metropolis and won so signal a vic- 


tory, to the modest yet confident demeanour of the victor in 
marked contrast to the manner and bearing of his challenger 
and, especially, to the interest excited in the classic beauty 
and fine physical development of the newcomer's form and 
person. London, we know, loves dearly to have an idol, how- 
ever brief and inconstant if we are to take the cynic's word 
for it maybe its idolatry. In Sandow's coming on the scene, 
the great city was, however, justified, in the matter both of 
physique and prowess, in its penchant for idols. Here is the 


as he then appeared, taken by a representative of the London 
Daily Telegraph, and published in that eminent journal, 
November 4th, 1889. " Personally he (Sandow) is a short, 
but perfectly -built young man of twenty-two years of age, 
with a face of somewhat ancient Greek type, but with the 
clear blue eyes and curling fair hair of the Teuton. When in 
evening dress there is nothing specially remarkable about this 
quiet-mannered, good-natured youth ; but when he takes off 
his coat and prepares for action, the extraordinary develop- 
ment of the arms, shoulders and back muscles is marvellously 
striking. It is no exaggeration to say that the statue of the 
' Farnese Hercules ' (see illustration) is not more powerfully 
modelled ; the muscles stand out under a clear white skin in 
high relief, and suggest the gnarled roots of old trees." 

Similar testimony to Sandow's attractiveness of person and 
rare physical development appeared, we may say, in the entire 
metropolitan press ; and, for months, almost every English 
journal gave columns to the chronicling of Sandow's wonder- 
ful doings. So great and wide-reaching was the interest 
taken in him, that, throughout the British islands, the wor- 
ship of muscle became a cult, and every phase of athleticism, 
with reminiscences of those who had notably figured in them, 


was minutely and unweariedly discussed. Referring to our 
hero's achievements, and their genuine and legitimate charac- 
ter, another London journal (the Morning Advertiser) at the 
period admiringly remarked, that " there was no doubt about 
the extraordinary performance of the victor (Sandow) in lift- 
ing and holding at arm's length a full-grown man, or in toy- 
ing with a 150 Ib. bar of iron as if it were an average dumb- 
bell. Unadorned efforts of this sort," the same journal goes 
on to say, in allusion to the stage- feats of other strongmen 
exhibitors, " speak for themselves, and appeal far more effect- 
ively to the admiring astonishment of the beholder than the 
snapping of chains or the bending and twisting of metal rods 
exhibitions which many people observe with a haunting 
distrust in their perfect authenticity, and a feeling that there 
is more of trick or ' knack ' than of downright physical 
prowess in them." 

Sandow came to London, however, to win a wager, not 
specially to be written about or merely looked at. As we 
have said, he had heard of Samson's challenge, on behalf of 
Cyclops, and he came to see, and if possible rival, the feats of 
this strongman and pocket the stake which Samson nightly 
made a show of putting up. For some weeks, Samson had 
been giving exhibitions in the London Aquarium, under the 
boastful designation of "the strongest man on earth," and 
lately he had associated with himself a pupil, whom he styled 
Cyclops. We owe to a London journal the following descrip- 
tion of master and pupil. "Samson," says this authority, 
"who is about thirty years old, was born at Baden (other 
biographers speak of him as an Alsatian), and for a long time 
he has travelled through Europe and America, exhibiting 
feats of strength, breaking thick chains with blows of his 
wrist, and twisting stout steel ropes by the mere muscular 
expansion of his chest and his arms. From the pictures of 
him which are exhibited throughout London one would be 


apt to think that he is a giant in proportions and formidable 
in appearance. Decked in war-paint he certainly looks a per- 
sonage undesirable to tackle, but seen in his every-day gar- 
ments faultlessly cut and of superlative fit he might easily 
be taken for a debonair attache in Her Majesty's diplomatic 
service, more accustomed to dance attendance at levees than 
to work for chainsmiths by breaking steel links across his 
breast. Cyclops, who when at home rejoices in the humble 
patronymic of Franz, is nineteen years old, and hails from 
the good old town of Hamburg, where he worked as a black- 
smith, until he came over to England to earn fame and 10 
a week as Samson's pupil. In stature he is far beyond his 
master. Huge in frame, fat and bull-necked, with a good- 
humoured, expressionless face, he appears to have found the 
exact vocation nature designed him for, in lifting huge 
weights above his head and swinging ponderous dumb-bells 
around his body as if they were children's toys. " 

These were the two men against whom Sandow had come to 
London to pit himself, and in entering the lists against them 
he was to bring both them and himself into fame. On the 
evening of the day on which Sandow and his friend Atilla 
reached London, they duly presented themselves at the West- 
minster Aquarium and took note of the feats ostentatiously 
performed by Samson and his pupil. So easy of accomplish- 
ment did the whole performance appear to Sandow, that he 
was with difficulty restrained from at once taking up the even- 
ing's challenge. Next night found Atilla and Sandow again 
in their places, accompanied by the latter's agent, Mr. Albert 
Fleming. When Samson appeared, and, as was his wont, 
offered a 100 note to any one present who should do the feats 
of strength about to be performed by Cyclops, Atilla took up 
the gage of battle for Sandow, who himself presently came 
upon the stage, and, as a local chronicler has it, naively asked 
if the money, were it won by an outsider, would be paid over 


on the spot. The wary young athlete was soon assured on 
this point. Flor at this juncture the 100 note was produced 
by Samson and, amid the applause of an expectant multitude, 
ras handed to the chairman of the Aquarium Company, 
i'his gentleman was Captain Molesworth, who sat in a private 
>x, near by the stage, and agreed to act as referee. 
Sandow's unexpected appearance on the platform was a sur- 
mise to Samson, who had grown accustomed to make his 
lightly challenge without fear of loss to his pocket, though 
le youth's presence had a decidedly stimulating effect on the 
ludience. This effect was increased when it became evident 
that the newcomer was no novice in the strongman's art, and 
could do, not only the feats Cyclops was wont nightly to per- 
form, but rival him in the more difficult tasks his master, 
under pressure of the situation, had set him to do. But this 
will be best gathered from a detailed account of what occurred, 
though in planning how best to furnish this we were con- 
fronted with an embarrassing dilemma. Our first thought 
was to tell the story, as modestly as possible, in our own 
words. The evening's incidents, however, were so exciting, 
and led to so much altercation, that, on reflection, we decided 
to abandon our purpose and let another tell the tale, who 
would not be suspected of partizanship, and in whose dispas- 
sionate judgment the reader might have confidence. If our 
own fairness can be relied upon, we would venture to say, 
that in selecting the report of the London Sportsman (see 
issue of Oct. 30, 1889), we have drawn not only upon an 
admittedly high authority, but upon a journal whose account is 
distinguished, over that of many of its compeers, by truthful- 
ness and moderation. We add that, for obvious reasons, we 
give the report entire, and not any garbled extracts from it. 


" SAMSON, who has been drawing excellent houses in the theatre at 


the Aquarium, had an extra good attendance last evening. Some- 
how a rumor, circulated in sporting circles, led to the conclusion that 
the performance of 'the strongest man in the world' and his pupil 
would be embellished by an unrehearsed effort worthy of the atten- 
tion of all amateurs of feats of strength. Samson has been issuing 
challenges nightly, offering sums of money to any one who would 
undertake to perform the same feats of strength as his pupil, Cyclops, 
who lifts dumb-bells and heavy weights with comparative ease. 
The fame of Cyclops has spread, and the offers made by Samson have 
apparently not fallen on a deaf ear, for last evening, at the commence- 
ment of the performance, an amateur in evening dress, presented by 
a friend, took up the gage, and, divesting himself of his upper gar- 
ments, stood out the beau ideal of an athlete. Herr Eugene Sandow, 
a young amateur from Konigsberg, in Pomerania, of twenty-two years 
of age, a friend of Professor Atilla, well known in Germany, France, 
and England, for the successes he has obtained in his particular line of 
business, professed his willingness to imitate the feats performed by 
the pupil of Samson. Herr Sandow had come expressly from Ven- 
ice, not to detract from the performance which has been carried on 
so successfully at the Aquarium, but to prove what a strong man is, 
and to take up the defiance which has been issued. He is an im- 
mensely powerful young fellow, weighing 14 stone, 61b., with a 
chest measurement of 45 inches, something enormous for his age. 
His muscles stand out like iron bands, and those who saw him when 
he removed his dress-coat and vest felt certain that Cyclops would 
find a foeman worthy of his steel. Herr Sandow has never before 
competed in public, but as an amateur he has won fame in Italy, 
Holland, Belgium, Russia, Switzerland, Austria, and France. In 
the first-named country he met three of the best wrestlers, and 
let them all come on at the same time, treating them as some modern 
Samson, and vanquished them easily. The tutor of Cyclops deter- 
mined that the novice should have no easy task, and after posting the 
hundred pounds in the hands of Captain Molesworth, the manager of 
the Aquarium, he varied the programme so as to tax not only 
the strength of his pupil, but that of Herr Sandow, to the very 


" Cyclops, notwithstanding the disapprobation manifested by the 
audience at the departure from the usual programme, took up 50 Ibs. 
with his left hand and then lifted up another hundredweight with 
liis right, elevating his arm until it was raised above his head. His 
Dpponent stepped to the weights, and amid loud applause carried the 

lundredweight twice above his head, outrivalling his predecessor, 
next performance was with the heavy dumb-bells, and this be- 

ig successfully done by the novice, some of the audience pretended 
it he had won. Cyclops, lying on the ground, raised the heavier 

lumb-bell at arm's length, and this feat was repeated amid renewed 
ipplause by Herr Sandow. Samson did not appear to relish the 
Dutlook, and instead of the ordinary block of stone, which weighs 
100 Ibs,. and has to be raised with one finger, extra weights were put 
on it, until Cyclops fairly staggered beneath the load. An outcry 

ras raised at this further departure from the programme, and some 
)f the audience exclaimed that the feat had been performed for the 
st time. There was a good deal of quibbling as to whether the 
shallenge thrown out by Samson really meant that any one accept- 

ig should be compelled to outrival Cyclops in feats of strength, or 

lerely implied that the usual performance should be gone through. 
When silence was restored, Herr Sandow implied his willingness to 
do what, his opponent had done, and he was cheered to the echo 
when he repeated the feat, which was accomplished with far more 
3ase by him. Cries and counter-cries were heard, and a soldier 

lade himself conspicuous in the gallery by the animated manner in 

rhicli he took the part of the newcomer, and by taunting Samson 

rith having lost his money. Samson, with difficulty, managed to 
)btain a hearing, explaining that the hundred pounds he had offered 

3uld only be claimed by a man who could do all that Cyclops had 
lone, and not what had been accomplished on any previous night. 
He said that he had ten more tricks for his pupil to perform, and 
that they must be successfully imitated by any one pretending to the 

loney deposited hi the hands of the stakeholder. This version of 
the offer made at the commencement of the proceedings was not ac- 
cepted by the majority of the spectators, who were of opinion that, 
the newcomer had done all, if not more, than had been required ol 


him. The scene became more and more animated, and ITerr San- 
dow sat down to rest while each party strove in vain to get a hear- 
ing ; and Samson's attempts to address the public were met by cries 
of ' No more performances ' ! * No more tricks ' ! ' Part ! ' The tu- 
mult was stilled when Captain Molesworth, who was seated in one 
of the private boxes, asked for a hearing, saying that he was stake- 
holder, and that the public might accept that statement as a guar- 
antee that he would see fair play, and only give the money when it 
was won. 

" Samson failed to relish the comments of the audience and lost 
his temper, while the life-guardsman in the gallery called on the 
amateur not to attempt any other performance. In vain 'the 
strongest man ' strove to prolong the agony, but the more he did so, 
the more hostile became the audience, and finally Mr. Frank Hinde, 
who evidently has the ear of the habitues of the Aquarium, went to 
the rescue, obtaining silence for Captain Molesworth, who said that 
he had decided that thus far the amateur had fairly accomplished 
all that had been asked of him. As referee he called on Samson to 
name any two feats which he considered were the best to prove the 
superiority of his pupil, intimating his intention of handing the 
100 over to Herr Sandow should he succeed in successfully imi- 
tating them. After another scene, Cyclops' impresario consented 
that the two feats should be named, although he argued that the last 
performance of his pupil had not been gone through by the man 
who had taken up his challenge. The first trial of strength pro- 
posed was imitated with apparent ease by Herr Sandow, and then 
Cyclops, girding up his loins for a final attempt, staggered under the 
heavy 1501b. dumb-bell, while, with a hundredweight in the left 
hand, he elevated his arm twice above his head, letting the weight 
fall with a thud on the stage. Shouts of don't do it ; Don't try it ; 
you have already' won your money ! ' greeted the young Konigs- 
berger as he stepped forward and felt the weight of the heavy 
dumb-bell. He smiled in response to the warnings, and poising the 
ponderous bell in the right hand he grasped the other weight, and, 
bending his left arm, slowly raised and lowered it, not twice but 
seven times, amid thunders of applause. 


" Samson again lost his temper, but there was no appeal against 
the decision of the referee, who had the hundred pounds handed 
over. He attempted to persuade the public that his challenge had 
been misunderstood, but his explanations were laughed to scorn, and 
even Professor Atilla, who mounted the platform, failed to obtain a 
hearing. Samson again offered 100 to Herr Sandow if on Satur- 
day night next, on the same stage and place, he would perform all 
the feats attempted by Cyclops, and again the challenge was ac- 
cepted. The young Konigsberger very wisely listened to the advice 
of his friends, and refrained from taking up the gage thrown down 
by Samson, who defied him then and there to go through his par- 
ticular performance of chain- snapping, breaking wire cables, etc., 
but he professed his willingness to demolish two steel chains with 
his naked fist if Samson would give the 500 he had been accus- 
tomed to offer any one who could imitate the feat he accomplishes 
nightly with his gloved hand. An explanation was volunteered 
that the 500 would become the property of Herr Sandow if on Sat- 
urday night he would perform the same feats as the challenger. 
This offer was accepted ; the wire strands were examined as Sam- 
son burst them asunder by inflating his chest, and also the chains, 
which were snapped by a violent effort of the muscles of his right 
arm. The great trial of strength will therefore take place in the 
theatre of the Aquarium on Saturday evening next. Samson has 
not disguised his intention of struggling to maintain his reputation 
as ' the strongest man in the world,' and the meeting will be an ex- 
citing one, although Herr Sandow has set himself a task in under- 
taking to outrival master and pupil in one and the same perform- 

Such, in detail, are the incidents of the evening's lively com- 
petition ; yet, severe as the test was, the honours were un- 
questionably Sandow's. After Samson's exhibition of petu- 
lance on the stage, it will little surprise the reader to learn 
that that redoubtable angrily repudiated his discomfiture. 
His pupil, after Sandow, figuratively speaking, had put his 
Cyclopean eye out, is related to have "burst into tears and 


wept like a child." Neither of these things, however, detracts 
from the fairness of the young Konigsberger's victory or 
alters the emphatic results of the challenge. Samson, naturally, 
had many admirers, drawn to him by his feats and long en- 
gagement at the Aquarium, and, of course, it was possible for 
him, through his friends, to try to turn defeat into a victory 
and create sympathy for himself by posing as the victim of 
the judge's decision. Like his Biblical prototype, he set fire 
to the foxes' tails of his pupil's and his own discomfiture, and 
sent them running through the Sandow-Philistines' corn. All 
this little helped the defeated strongman, however, except as 
he shared later in the results of the increased attractions of 
the Aquarium, consequent upon the coming of Sandow and 
his embarrassing acceptance of Samson's challenge. This, in- 
deed, was no slight aid, for it would be difficult to overstate 
the furor throughout London occasioned by the public shear- 
ing of Samson, by the male-Delilah who had so dauntlessly 
appeared on the scene." 

Into almost every nook and corner of the great city had 
news entered of the battle of the giants, and public excitement 
rose to fever-heat in anticipation of the greater contest, to be 
settled on the following Saturday evening. The subject, for 
the time, indeed dwarfed every other topic of local and even 
international importance, including the Parnell Commission, 
then sitting ; while the Press found in it prolific themes of 
interesting comment and, among the journalistic wits, amus- 
ing reflection. One of the latter, a writer in the Glasgow 
Herald, made sport of the affair by affecting to bewail the 
public loss of its most cherished allusions the taking upon 
trust the claim of the idol showman to be bigger, smaller, or 
fatter than the rest of us which turns out, after test, to be 
disenchantment. "It is painful to hear," observes the 
writer, " that Samson, 'the strongest man on earth,' has been 
subjected to destructive criticism, as if he were an historical 

myth like William Tell's apple, Richard the Third's hump, or 
Cambronne's defiance at Waterloo. . . . The appearance 
of a second strongest man on earth or the equal at least of 
the strongest man's second on the same stage as the first is 
disheartening, and it seems not improbable that any number 
of these superlatives may be forthcoming. A young man, 
who as far as physique is concerned was not to be compared 
with either Samson or his pupil, Mr. Frank Cyclops, seems to 
have lifted weights and performed other feats with a facility 
which astonished and delighted the audience. The stranger 
also won a 100 note, which had been boldly wagered by 
Samson in support of his declaration that nobody was strong 
enough to earn it. The 100 note was a financial detail. The 
stranger who won it from M. Samson seems to have earned it 
fairly and squarely, and he now probably appreciates the 
theory recently discovered by a distinguished prelate that bet- 
ting is not a sheer loss of money to the man who wins. The 
principal part of the whole business is the loss of another of 
our illusions. M. Samson, who appears to hail from Alsace, 
ought not to have walked into a trap of his own setting. It 
did not matter what country gave him birth so long as he was 
a permanent ideal to those people who never expect to handle 
500 Ib. weights to look up to. 



THE evening of Saturday, Nov. 2d, 1889, proved another 
red-letter night in Sandow's phenomenal* career. The contest, 
as we have seen, had been eagerly looked forward to in almost 
all circles in the metropolis, certainly in all circles interested 
in athletic sports. Hardly anything, indeed, could more em- 
phasize the love for athletics in the English nation than the 
interest manifested in this contest, between Sandow and Sam- 
son. " If the fate of the Empire," observes a London journal- 
ist of the period, "had hung in the balance, more keenness in 
the coming match could not have been shown." Looking 
back now upon it, it is no doubt to be regretted that the results 
of the encounter were not more satisfactory ; though it may 
fairly be asserted that Mr. Sandow, at least, was in no way 


responsible for that. The terms of the challenge were ad- 
mittedly loose, and the conditions, if they were drawn up at 
all, can hardly be said to have been acted upon when the con- 
test came off. It may matter little now ; but the unbiased 
reader will be apt to say, as very probably was said at the time, 
that if the comparative strength of the two contestants was 
worth determining, it should have been determined con- 
clusively and on a proper basis. There should have been no 
room either for shuffling or display of temper ; while both 
athletes ought to have been tried by the same tests, and the 
genuineness of the tests vouched for beyond suspicion or perad- 
venture. To omit the guarantees of good faith in a contest 
of such moment, was to discredit whatever was legitimate in 
the performance. Nor were the issues of the contest helped 
when the challenger, hugging his resentment, refused to ' give 
a lead ' or to attempt the feats performed by his opponent. 
Under the circumstances, it is not surprising that Fate and 
the audience of the evening went against him. 

But we are anticipating, and, moreover, in danger of giv- 
ing a colour to the story we have to relate, which we would 
fain avoid. Lest we should do so, we will, with the reader's 
permission, follow the plan adopted in the previous chapter, 
of giving an account of the evening's incidents as supplied by 
the contemporary press, selecting, as dispassionately as possible, 
a narrative which shall tell the facts as they happened, with- 
out prejudice or exaggeration. To vary the representation of 
the London journals quoted in these pages, we will, on the 
present occasion, draw upon the Daily News' report, which we 
append as follows: 


" Athletics had an exciting, not to say uproarious, field-night on 
Saturday at the Westminster Aquarium. The beauty of the turn- 


stile system was well illustrated, for without these revolving bar- 
riers of iron the eager multitude would probably have carried the 
place by storm. The rival athletes, Samson, the Alsatian, and San- 
dow, the German, gave a public trial of strength, with the object 
of proving which was ' the strongest man on earth.' That was the 
promised -bill of fare. The theatre was crowded, many of the seats 
having, according to rumour, fetched sums varying from one to five 
pounds. With two or three somewhat conspicuous examples the 
audience was one of men gentlemen, many of them, of position (as 
for example, Lord Bury, who sat in one of the stalls), shining lights 
from the Pelican Club, sporting men from the Stock Exchange, be- 
sides Mr. John Hollingshead, Mr. Edgar Bruce, Mr. Kyrle Bellew, 
Lieutenant Dan Godfrey, and Colonel North. The tobacco smoke, 
gradually rising like incense on high, became thick enough to dis- 
sect before the curtain rose ; but you could make out quite clearly 
that the theatre was packed with a very fair specimen of athletic 
humanity, men who could give a literally striking account of them- 
selves in a scrimmage. Samson came to the footlights, dapper, 
radiant in medals, tights, and dainty boots, and smiling with con- 
fidence. He made a little speech, the first of an unconscionable 
series delivered or attempted before the business ended. He wanted 
fair play ; he offered 500 to any one who would come on the stage 
and perform the feats he performed. Never mind where such a 
man came from ; let him appear. There was no response, only a 
babel of cries from the audience. By and by a gentleman, not un- 
known in the prize ring, advanced to the footlights, stretched forth 
his hand, and said, ' Sandow is not far off. He is in a room.' Mean- 
while Samson, after a considerable pause, made signs of beginning ; 
but upon cries for ' Sandow,' put on his cloak, and strutted back- 
wards and forwards on the boards. He again came forward to say 
that he did not want the challenge money ; he would give it to any 
hospital ; and there was a very pretty hubbub thus early in pit and 
gallery. With a fine flourish, the Samsonian cloak was now assumed 
the wearer explaining that there was too much draught ; he did not 
want to kill himself ; he would retire to abide events in his dressing- 
room. The next commotion was caused by a number of gentlemen 


reaching the stage by flying leaps from a side-box, sweating and 
touzled after fighting their way through a frenzied mob in the 
crowded hall outside. 

"At last Sandow entered, amidst general cheering; Captain 
Molesworth, apologizing for the delay caused by the besieged state 
of the building and its approaches, announced that the Marquis of 
Queensberry and Lord de Clifford had consented to act as judges, 
and asked for fair play for the competitors. The two men were in 
the centre of the stage. Samson, in his gay athletic costume, Sandow 
in a plain, pink, sleeveless under- vest, and black trousers encircled 
by a leather belt. Neither of the men is of more than medium 
height, but their arms were a rare spectacle, by reason of masses of 
muscle brought by practice to the hardness of metal. Sandow, 
however, has the more spacious chest and largest arms, and a con- 
noisseur would probably fancy him as best for a trial of sheer 
strength. We had soon to hear the programme, as explained by 
Captain Molesworth. This was to be a continuation of a trial of 
the previous Tuesday, when Samson had to pay 100 won from his 
pupil, Cyclops, to Sandow, and when Samson offered 500 if San- 
dow could perform his feats. Upon this statement being made, 
Samson came forward to protest, and an interval of uproar ensued. 
Captain Molesworth begged the audience to hear Samson, who was 
of Southern temperament and excitable. Thus adjured, the crowd 
were silent until Samson insisted that his challenge was for 500. 
against the same sum. If that amount was not forthcoming, let it 
be 100 against 100. Another swell of clamour followed, Samson 
excitedly declaring, ' If he wins, he takes my name. I leave the 
stage. If he loses, I give the money to an hospital.' Captain Moles- 
rorth said that he should be sorry to see the audience disappointed, 
md therefore he undertook, in the name of the Royal Aquarium 
Company, that 100 should be placed against Samson's 500. 
Crowding to the front, Samson now insisted that he offered noth- 
ig of the kind, asked for fair play, and remarked that he would be 
taken for a fool to offer 500 against 100. At last it was settled 
that it was to be 100 against 100, and in course of time Samson 
threw down a number of lengths of what appeared to be iron gas- 


piping, and left them to carry on further disputation with the judges. 
Sandow stood back, his tremendous arms folded upon his broad 
chest, his clean-cut head, covered with short, close curls, held 
straight upon a Titanic neck; altogether a model for the statue 
that he seemed to be. 

" A beginning might never have been made but for the judges, who 
decided that Samson must do the feats of strength he was in the 
habit of doing every night. This decided action on the part of the 
Marquis of Queensberry and Lord de Clifford evoked from a well- 
known wit in the front stalls the remark, ' Ah, I always said the 
House of Lords was a useful institution.' The first feat was with 
one of the iron pipes. Samson belaboured himself upon the chest, 
leg, and arms, bending it and straightening it back again by the 
blows. He did it gracefully and swiftly. Sandow laboured more, 
was clumsy, and took more time, but he performed the feat. After 
the inevitable discussion raised by Samson on the stage and a tumult 
amongst the audience, who, apparently, were by this time largely on 
the side of the phlegmatic German, Captain Molesworth stated that 
Sandow wished it to be known that he had never done the trick 
in his life before. Samson darted to the front and dashed into a 
speech that was drowned in uproar, save the one sentence, ' Why, he 
did it six years ago.' Next came a prolonged squabble about a strap 
trick, which the judges decided Sandow was not called upon to imi- 
tate. Then there was a feat of breaking a wire rope fastened round 
the chest. Samson performed it with the neatness of one accus- 
tomed to the trick of twisting the ends of the wire strands together. 
Sandow was obviously unacquainted with the knack, and it AV;IS 
only after prompting from the audience as to the twisting, and sev- 
eral fruitless efforts, that he succeeded. It was a splendid effort of 
strength. The man seemed like to burst in his effort to obtain the 
requisite expansion of chest, and when the iron rope burst asunder, 
like the withes of the Philistines around the limbs of the original 
Samson, the audience leaped to their feet, and shook the place with 
deafening cheers. The next thing was a contention and uproar 
about some bottle trick of Samson's not sanctioned by the judges ; 
then chain bracelets were brought forward. Samson, always 


theatrical, put one set on his forearm, and offered one to Sandow. 
It was too small for such an arm, and he rejected it with a slight 
gesture of contempt. There seemed to be a hitch here. As the 
chain ring which fitted Samson would not go on Sandow's arm, how 
would the House of Lords get out of the difficulty ? For once San- 
dow abandoned his statuesque attitude. To the astonishment of all 
he whipped out from his trouser-pocket an armlet of his own, and it 
was then necessary to wait until the audience had bawled them- 
selves out. The proof of equality with an emergency was another 
feather in Sandow's cap. The unfortunate Samson protested, gestic- 
ulated, argued, trod the deck, and generally cavorted around. 
Another appeal to the House of Lords was a matter of course. At 
last the rivals put on their chains and smashed them by sheer 
expansion of muscle, the one as cleverly as the other. Samson 
snatched up the fragments of Sandow's armlet and ran about shak- 
ing them derisively, asserting that they were not of the same 
material. A gentleman in the audience, however, handed up an 
invoice from a Leicester Square firm certifying that they had sup- 
plied to Sandow one dozen yards of jack chain, the same as used 
by Samson. It was a long while before order could be restored, the 
incident apparently being regarded by the audience as a clincher. 

" Enter Samson a little later, to hurl a heap of chain upon the 
stage, and shout ' I give him 1,000 if he breaks it.' Furious yells 
rent the smoky atmosphere. Samson donned the everlasting toga, 
and palaver the hundred-and-twentieth, or thereabouts, reminded 
the judges that their post was no sinecure. It was as good as a game 
to note the contrast between the quicksilvery Alsatian here, there, 
and everywhere, and the stolid German, with folded arms and lips 
closed like a trap, standing a motionless sentinel in the background. 
By and by Samson broke a piece off a chain, Captain Molesworth 
(not by any means for the first time during the evening) interceding 
with the audience not to disturb him by their interruptions. Samson 
himself shouted ' I have not had fair play at all,' an ill-timed remark 
which filled the cup of disfavour to the brim. There were at this 
time many demands from the gallery for a trial of lifting weights, but 
no notice was taken of them. Other propositions were made, amidst 


much talkee talkee on the stage, without avail. Samson's cloak was 
now off, and now on, and a more than usually tiresome consultation 
was ended by Captain Moles worth stating that the judges had 
decided that as Mr. Samson would not give a lead, Mr. Sandow 
might perform some feats of his own. The young German accord- 
ingly lifted a stiffened and upright man from the ground, and per- 
formed some astonishing feats with a Brobdignagian dumb-bell, 
weighing 150 Ibs. Some of the feats Samson, from the side of the 
stage, applauded as heartily as any one ; but he raised another hurri- 
cane by the prelude of an attempted speech. ' I give Mr. Sandow 
credit,' he said, 'for his strength. I knew Mr. Sandow a long 

time ' The audience effectually prevented the conclusion of the 

sentence. Sandow went on with his feats, and Samson made a rush 
at a chain which he and his assistants were manipulating, and tried 
to drag it away. Foiled in the attempt, he rushed about the stage 
shouting 'It is his own material.' The tempest was not allayed 
when a gentleman in the stall offered Samson 50 if he would do 
what Sandow had done with the dumb-bell, and Sandow's manager 
publicly challenged him to the same test. The challenge was not 
accepted. Midnight was by this time approaching, and Captain 
Molesworth virtually closed the programme by announcing, amidst 
general cheering, that the judges had decided that Sandow had done 
everything that Samson had done. The audience gave the victo- 
rious man an ovation, and it was then observed that Samson had 
disappeared from the stage. Special cheers were given for the 
judges and for Captain Molesworth, and there were calls for the 
rival gladiators to publicly shake hands. Samson, however, was 
seen no more ; but Sandow, in a few words of German, returned 

The honours of this second public trial of strength, the reader 
will agree with us, were, beyond question, again Sandow's. 
We repeat, it is a pity that the results of the contest were not 
more satisfactory ; though it cannot be said that the aggrieved 
Samson was in any sense wronged or failed to receive British 


fair play. Throughout the evening's performance the injured 
manner and irate mood of the man were much against him ; 
while it was easy to see, from the contrast in the bearing of 
his opponent, as well as from his unquestioned prowess, why 
the audience was demonstratively in the latter's favour. An- 
other point of obvious regret was the absence of a well- 
arranged and agreed-upon programme, and of the sureties, as 
to the bona fides of the feats to be severally performed, which 
ought to have been provided for in the preliminaries. As 
matters turned out, Sandow, though he undoubtedly won 
Samson's challenge, was not paid over the wager (nor has it 
been paid to this day), while the latter carried his wrangling 
from the stage to the Press, and, for a time, made what 
capital he could by posing in public as a martyr. On this 

)int, and on that of the relative merits of the two athletes' 
feats of strength, let us quote a provincial journal, which, 
two days after the contest, published the following sensible 
view of the affair. Says the Birmingham Gazette (Nov. 5, 
1889) : " Samson is still unsatisfied. He is too good a sports- 
man not to acknowledge that he has met a formidable an- 
tagonist, but he declares that he has not been allowed to put 
him to the test for which he, Samson, stipulated. The point 
which the public with collective common-sense has seized upon, 
is that Samson has been proclaiming himself ' the strongest 

lan on earth.' Now the question arises ; How can that mat- 
ter be determined ? Is it by lifting weights, by breaking chains 
and rods, by any of the various forms of physical endurance 
such as standing on one leg, or by any other device or means 
that we can put the matter to proof ? Samson insists upon the 
contests being those more or less tricky ones with which he 
has made the public familiar. But these do not satisfy the 
public, who much prefer the simpler kinds of tests, such as 
weight-lifting and dumb-bell exercises. 

" Upon the latter basis Sandow has unquestionably won the 


challenge fairly. It seems a pity that the difficulties cannot 
be solved by some such plan as the independent establishment 
of a series of tests by a competent authority, to which both 
men shall submit. Nothing creates so unpleasant a feeling 
among the British public as any suspicion of unfair play, and 
Samson may rely upon it that public spirit will support him 
in every effort he makes to obtain a fair trial. Something 
more will be wanted, however, than his suggested feat of snap- 
ping a chain. Obviously that is much too tricky a perform- 
ance to be accepted as a test of strength." 

That Mr. Sandow was only too well aware of the unsatis- 
factory issues of his match with Mr. Samson, and eager to 
put the strength of each competitor to a proper test, is clear 
from his ready acceptance of a new challenge, which Samson 
had issued on the night of the contest. Samson's challenge 
was affixed to a rather rambling setting- forth of his so-called 
grievances, and to a correction, which he seemed to think 
necessary, of misstatements (sic) respecting the late match 
appearing in the Press. Explicit, as well as reasonable, as are 
the terms of the proposed match which Mr. Sandow, through 
his agent, expressed his willingness to consent to, nothing 
came of it. Here, however, is the letter, which was addressed 
to the editor of the Sportsman and published in the issue of 
that journal for Nov. 6th. 

" To the Editor of the Sportsman, Sir : With reference to 
the challenge published in your paper on Monday to the effect 
that Mr. Samson is willing to stake 5,000, to Mr. Sandow's 
500, if Mr. Sandow can break on his arm chains to be pro- 
duced by Mr. Samson, I, on behalf of Mr. Sandow (the van- 
quisher of Cyclops and Samson), wish to say that he will ac- 
cept this challenge on the following conditions : 1. That the 
chains shall be selected by a jury of three gentlemen, to be 
named by the editor of any influential newspaper. 2. That 
the chains selected shall be made to fit the arm of each com- 


petitor, shall be bought, packed, and sealed by the jury, the 
seals to be broken on the stage in front of the audience. 3. 
That before the contest takes place all financial transactions 
connected with the competition of last Saturday night shall be 
satisfactorily settled, according to the decision of the judges 
on that occasion. 4. That in the event of neither Mr. San- 
low nor Mr. Samson succeeding in breaking the chains so pro- 
duced on the stage before the jury, then Mr. Sandow shall name 
six bonafide feats of strength which he is prepared to go 
through, and if Mr. Samson succeeds in doing three of these 
feats, then Mr. Sandow will repay him the 500, which he 
ron from him on Saturday night. 

" Yours, etc., 

"Manager for Mr. Sandow. 
" LONDON, Nov. 5." 

Though nothing, as we have said, came of this further 
match, interest in the competitors by no means flagged. 
Great, indeed, was the strongman "boom " at the Aquarium, 
where Mr. Samson continued his now well-advertised perform- 
mces, and especially at the Alhambra, which had secured 
Mr. Sandow for a lengthened engagement. The drawing 
qualities of the latter were, we need hardly say, most con- 
spicuous, including not only all athletic and would-be athletic 
London, but royalty, also, and the flower of the nobility, plus 
the 61ite of Mayfair and Belgravia. Royalty was represented 
by H. K. H. the Prince of Wales and H. E. H. the Duke of 
Edinburgh, both of whom, we learn from the Press of the 
period, were interested spectators at Mr. Sandow's exhibitions. 
The former paid Mr. Sandow the compliment of a visit to his 
robing-room and asked to possess his photograph, while the 
latter was equally enthusiastic and exchanged gifts with the 

renowned athlete. 


The Press, it is pleasant to state, maintained unabated 
interest in the performances of the young Prussian athlete, 
and ably seconded his efforts to disseminate intelligent views 
on the subject of physical education and the perfect develop- 
ment of the human form. This was an important service, as 
Mr. Sandow was now devoting his leisure, in addition to his 
Alhambra duties, to giving lessons on muscular training. 
Gratifying, consequently, was this appreciation on the part 
of the Press, for it will be understood that Mr. Sandow con^ 
siders his exhibitions a very minor though onerous function, 
in comparison with the interest he feels in athletics in their 
relation to * bodily health and the physical equipment of the 
race. One of the newspaper comments to which we have re- 
ferred, and in which the great athlete heartily coincided, was 
the remark of an editor, given currency to in his journal, to 
the effect, "that it was singular that while a fine physique is 
constantly proving to be as much an object of admiration 
as it ever was in England, the simple and easy means of se- 
curing that advantage to every man, in degree, should not 
be more generally cultivated." The remark applies with like 
force to the New World, and is pertinent to the condition of 
things that obtain here, in the neglected matter of physical 



IN the Press, the " War of the Titans," as the journalists 
loved to call the Samson-Sandow contest, was still being 
fought over and stimulated, to an extraordinary degree, the 
great London market for the display of Herculean wares. 
Sandow's exhibitions at the Alhambra, in which he was pro- 
fessionally assisted by his old friend, M. Atilla, continued 
nightly to crowd the house to the doors, and to extort un- 
bounded, even extravagant, applause from the audience. The 
fame of the lionised athlete also brought him within the 
region of art, comic as well as serious, for Sandow's name was- 
in the mouth of all London,' and his feats were made material 
for travesty by the illustrated Press, in connection with the 
Parliamentary chiefs of the time and their respective sayings 
and doings. Perhaps the most amusing of these burlesques 


was the St. Stephen's Review cartoon, which represented Mr. 
Gladstone and Mr. Balfour, in athlete garb, rivalling each 
other, in elevating over their heads heavy dumb-bells labelled 
the "Irish Question." But serious art did not withhold its 
tribute, for Sandow was made an artistic study of in pho- 
tography at the atelier of Mr. Van der Weyde, who desired, 
as he expressed it, to place before the public " a living Greek 
statue," taking the splendidly developed athlete as his model. 
The painting by Mr. Aubrey Hunt, R.A., representing Mr. 
Sandow as a gladiator in an arena at Rome, was a further 
tribute to the young Konigsberger's fame. The well-poised 
small head, close curls, broad shoulders, and sinewy arms are 
displayed to capital advantage in this striking and finely- 
painted picture from Mr. Hunt's easel. In it, the great 
athlete stands, lightly clad in a tiger-skin and sandals, in the 
centre of an immense arena, the indistinct mass of gaily- 
dressed spectators forming an artistic background to the 

Mr. Sandow was now to make his bow to the athlete-loving 
people of the English Provinces, and there, for a brief space, 
let us follow him, for the fashion of London was to become 
the vogue also in the great centres of England's industries. 
Before setting out, however, let us record the incidents of an 
evening's exhibition at the Alhambra, for, so far, we have seen 
the invincible in competition only with his would-be rivals. 
To the Sporting Life, of Nov. 19th, we are indebted for the 
following introductory and chronicle : 


" There are few things," says the Sporting Life reporter, " which 
excite an Englishman's admiration more than an act that requires 
a deal of nerve in its fulfilment. Any act of intrepidity, daring, 
or physical strength will elicit unstinted applause from the average 


Briton, whose boast is that his games are open to all comers, neither 
country nor colour barred, and although he is beaten oft-times, all his 
opponents receive fair play. It will be fresh in the minds of our 
readers how the modern Samson offered 100 to any one who would 
perform the feats of strength performed by his pupil Cyclops, and 
500 to any one who could perform the feats that he had been show- 
ing daily at the Royal Aquarium, Westminster. How unexpectedly, 
one evening a sturdy young fellow lightly stepped on the stage, ac- 
cepted the offer of 100, wielded the heavy weights about as if they 
were playthings, and claimed the offered ' century.' Having van- 
quished the pupil, he volunteered to beat the master, and this he also 
accomplished in such a quiet and unassuming manner that the con- 
queror of Samson (as Professor Atilla delights in calling him) can- 
not but fail to command admiration as a man of extraordinary 
strength and physical development. In all countries and at all times 
there have been men of great strength, some of them possessing a 
muscular power so far beyond belief that one cannot help thinking 
that some exaggeration must have cropped up in the records handed 
down to us of their doings. But after seeing a display of bodily 
strength similar to the display given last evening by Sandow at the 
Alhambra, one becomes reconciled to the doings of these wonderful 
athletes. To revert to the doings of Sandow and Atilla last night. 
Directly the number was hoisted the audience commenced clapping. 
Professor Atilla was the first to occupy the stage, wielding 56 Ib. 
weights and holding 112 Ibs. up with one arm. Then he wielded a bar 
of steel weighing 90 Ibs., and finished with balancing it on his chin. 
After wielding a dumb-bell of 150 Ibs. he bent backward over a chair, 
and, returning, brought the 150 Ib. dumb-bell with him a very credit- 
able feat of strength which the audience applauded. Then Herr San- 
dow tripped lightly on the stage, attired in pink tights, a blue vest, and 
his breast covered with medals. His coming was greeted with pro- 
longed cheers. He commenced his entertainment by posing and 
then, putting both hands at the back of his head, moved his biceps in 
a marvellous manner. Catching up the 150 Ib. dumb-bell, he moves 
slowly and gracefully with it, apparently without an effort, turns 
somersaults, and makes a mere plaything of this dumb-bell. Then, 


by way of varying the entertainment, he lifts an attendant, weigh- 
ing 10 stone, about from side to side, and wonderfully holds him up 
above his head with one arm. He then picks up a larger dumb- 
bell, weighing 300 Ibs. and raises it up twice with one hand. Sitting 
down on the stage, a board is rested on his knees and shoulders, and 
every available weight on the stage is placed upon it. As the last 
straw, Professor Atilla jumped on with a club, and the curtain fell 
amidst tremendous cheers. Upon being recalled, the Professor and 
Sandow playfully threw the 150 Ib. bell backwards and forwards to 
each other and retired, but were again recalled before the curtain. 
C. A. Samson and Cyclops were interested spectators, but Sandow's 
performances are purely feats of strength. He neither breaks chains 
nor wires, but confines himself to weight-lifting only the entertain- 
ment being a most marvellous exhibition." 

As a pendant to this, we may be suffered to quote a per- 
sonal portrait of Mr. Sandow, from a Liverpool paper of a 
little later period. "The refined manner," says the report, 
" in which Sandow goes through his performance is not un- 
derstood except by those who have seen him. In appearance, 
the athlete is not by any means the ponderous being that is 
imagined. There is a conspicuous absence of the brutal pro- 
portions supposed to accompany muscular power, Sandow 
possessing one of the most symmetrical figures it is possible 
for the developed male to be endowed with. He is positively 
handsome in form, feature, face, and limb, the only propor- 
tion appearing somewhat out of balance being the enormous 
muscular development from shoulder to wrist, his arms seem- 
ing to have been hewn out of marble. The athlete's manner, 
moreover, is gracious and pleasing. He is the beau-ideal of 
athletic elegance ; he is not a big man, being of average size, 
though lithe and rapid in action and movement. Nor is there 
any painful exertion in his manipulations : on the contrary, 
he maintains a serene, calm, and easy demeanour throughout 
his arduous performance." 

Mr. Sandow's tour of the Provinces, accompanied by Pro- 


lessor Atilla, extended from February till May, 1890, and 
>vered visits to the following and other towns Bristol, 
Bradford, Nottingham, Manchester, Sheffield, Leeds, Halifax, 
Huddersfield, Boston, Preston, Liverpool, Hull, Newcastle, 
York, Chester, Lancaster, Rochdale, and Derby. Everywhere 
a hearty reception awaited the now famous athlete, who 
astonished as well as delighted his audiences by his deft skill 
and prodigious strength. In some of the larger cities, such 
as Birmingham, Manchester, and Liverpool, the interest in 
athletics was manifestly quickened by the exhibition of Mr. 
Sandow's performances, and especially by the private exhibi- 
tions he was called upon to give to medical men and local 
athletes, who marvelled at the Prussian strongman's ' ' moun- 
tains of muscle " and phenomenal strength. 

The spring of 1891 Mr. Sandow also passed in paying suc- 
cessful professional visits to Birmingham and Liverpool. At 
both these cities the renowned athlete created great excite- 
ment and roused to a high pitch public interest in athletics. For 
the period of his sojourn in Birmingham, the Winter Gardens, 
where he gave his exhibitions, were crowded nightly by im- 
mense audiences, and the same is to be said of Mr. Sandow's 
appearances at Hengler's Circus, Liverpool. At each of these 
cities the Athletic Clubs vied with each other in paying cour- 
tesy to their distinguished guest, while the medical profession, 
in both cities also, made the great athlete the subject of admir- 
ing critical examination. During these seances with the 
medicos, Mr. Sandow good-naturedly gave demonstrations of 
his wonderful powers, including the lifting of men, over 16 
stone in weight, from the ground at arm's length on to a 
table, and the tearing in two, by the strength of the wrists, of 
one pack, and on another occasion of two packs, of playing cards. 
The Christmas holiday season of 1892 found Sandow, by 
special invitation, at the Scottish capital, giving exhibitions 
of his strength at a Carnival held in the Waverley Market, 

69 . 

Edinburgh. There " monster gatherings, numbering as many 
as 20, 000 people, greeted the great athlete with Scottish heart- 
iness and ardour. Nor were his admirers those only who saw 
him at the Carnival ; on the streets of the fair city, if we may 
trust the local chroniclers of the Press, he was followed by 
crowds, who ' ' appeared to derive the liveliest satisfaction from 
observing all his movements. The amount of interest," remarks 
the Edinburgh Evening Dispatch, "his performances have 
aroused extends far beyond the ordinary Carnival audience. 
Many people have gone expressly to see him who never before 
honoured the Carnival with their presence, and his astound- 
ing feats have been the subject of universal comment in Edin- 
burgh society for the past ten days. " The Scotsman, the great 
Liberal organ of the Northern capital, was equally compli- 
mentary in its greeting of Sandow, as was the press of 
Glasgow, the sister city of the West, when the strongman 
paid it a visit. At Glasgow, Sandow's performances were 
hailed with the same fervour, and immense audiences filled 
the "Gaiety" and the "Scotia," where he successively ap- 
peared, to witness the unique and artistic display of muscle. 
Here, also, the medical faculty turned out in force to inspect 
and admire the champion strongman's physical frame. 
"Quiz," " The Bailie," the North British Daily Mail, and the 
Glasgow Evening News devoted columns to the chronicling of 
Sandow's feats one of these journals noting the fact that some 
of the good people of the city, actuated by conscientious 
scruples, were prevented from witnessing Sandow's prowess, in 
consequence of his exhibitions taking place in an uncovenanted 
hall. Says the journal in question : " The amount of interest 
aroused in medical as well as social circles has extended all 
over the world, and many more would be highly interested 
and become admirers of his wonderful ability, if it were not 
for the prudish spirit against being within the walls of a 
music-hall ! Of his performances, however, nothing but praise 
can be given." 




IN the autumn of 1890, to revert to the doings of 
that year Mr. Sandow returned to London after his suc- 
cessful tour in the North. He had now become a very 
familiar figure and a great favourite with the frequenters 
of the theatres and variety-entertainment haunts in the 
metropolis. He hegan the season with an engagement 
at the Royal Music Hall, Holborn, with a programme which 
in its drawing qualities eclipsed all previous attractions and 
made him anew the sensation of the year. The great athlete 
had been, manifestly, increasing his strength and still further 
developing his wonderful muscular powers. At any time, it 
was a pleasure to witness his exhibitions, for, as a performer, 
he gave universal delight by the unaffected way in which he 
got through even his most difficult tasks, avoiding the poses, 


grimaces, and stage swaggerings, with which professional 
strongmen are too apt to decorate their feats. In addition 
to the extended repertoire Sandow had now to offer for the 
entertainment and wonder of his nightly audiences, he had 
brought with him to " The Holborn " a veritable giant, whom 
he had picked up doing the work of a stone-quarryman near 
Aix-la-Chapelle. This phenomenon was named " Goliath," 
and could hardly have been dwarfed by his namesake of Gath, 
champion of the Philistines, who measured, we are told, "six 
cubits and a span." Such a massive and rough-hewn block of 
muscular humanity probably never appeared on the stage 
before. He is 6 ft. 2i inches in height, and weighs 27 stone ! 
''Goliath," observes a London reporter in attempting a de- 
scription of this stage giant, "is of fearful and wonderful 
uncomeliness : he has hands big enough to let him use pillow- 
cases in daily wear as gloves. His measurements round 
chest, arm and head are phenomenal. At present he has not 
been educated to many stage tricks, and limits his share in 
the performance to walking round with a cannon weighing 
400 Ibs. on his shoulder. Sandow, however, makes up for the 
monotony of his partner's show by some really marvellous 
feats of strength, including the lifting of Goliath from the 
ground with one finger, and poising him overhead with one 

Of this man of almost fabled proportions, we shall get a 
fuller description, as well as an account of Sandow's new ex- 
hibition, in another source that of the Sunday Times (Sep. 
20, 1890) which we herewith introduce to the reader : 


" As I am standing on the stage of the Royal Music Hall, chatting 
with Captain Taylor, the courteous manager, a young man, clad in a 
dark tweed suit, with a buff waistcoat, emerges from the wing, and 


stands, cigarette in mouth, watching the motions of the stage car- 
penters setting the stage. Captain Taylor introduces him as Mr. 
Sandow. The abnormal muscular development which makes him 
unique among living men is hidden in his street attire, and 
iu his face, or in what is visible of his figure, there is nothing 
to speak of his extraordinary strength. The face and figure both 
look a little boyish. After a minute's chat on indifferent subjects he 
invites me to his dressing-room, on a level with the stage, in which 
the paraphernalia used in his performance are kept. In the corner 
is his " dumb-bell," two huge masses of metal united by a steel bar, 
and weighing in all 312 Ibs., 12 Ibs. heavier than that he used at the 
Alhambra, and much more difficult of manipulation, owing to its in- 
crease of several inches in length. This he invites me to examine. 
With considerable difficulty I manage to support it, staggering un- 
der its weight, when he insinuates a casual forefinger about the biir 
and relieves me of the burden. Various other of the weights which 
figure in his performance are standing about the room, and as he chats 
with me he performs, in an easy manner, various feats with them, 
and ends by getting me to stand on the palm of one of his hands 
while he lifts me on to the dressing-table. He dissipates the wonder 
of this performance by telling me that he is going to do the same 
witli Goliath, the new giant, who scales twenty-seven stone. ' I am 
expecting him every minute,' he says. ' Come back to the stage, 
perhaps he is here now.' We go back, and there, sure enough, 
stands Goliath, a huge mountain of flesh and bone, standing well 
over six feet, with a chest measurement of Heaven knows how many 
inches, and huge face like a pantomime mask. This gentleman's 
hand measures over twelve inches from the tip of the thumb to 
that of the little finger, and the silver ring on the index of his right 
hand slides easily, with room to spare, over any two of my fingers. 
His hat covers my head and rests upon my shoulders. He bestrides 
the narrow stage like a Colossus, and Sandow, standing beside him, is 
a mere pigmy, though he is almost as much Goliath's superior in mere 
brute force as he is in deftness. Goliath speaks no English, but has 
a fashion of expressing friendly interest in anything going forward 
a sort of short grunt, which shakes the building. 


" Three stage-carpenters are now arranging upon the platform in 
the centre of the stage the tools with which the two giants are to 
perform their nightly work. The great dumb-bell, the smaller article 
of the same kind, the hundred-weight and half-hundred-weights, 
and similar trifles are symmetrically placed about the carpet- covered 
da'is, and Sandow, leisurely stripping off his coat, proceeds to 
rehearsal. It is a mere ' music-cue ' rehearsal, and much the most 
interesting part of the performance is gone through in dumb- 
show. It transpires during its progress that the gigantic Go- 
liath has very little to do except to pose as a foil for his infinitely 
stronger and cleverer companion. Sandow's penultimate perform- 
ance is really marvellous : Goliath, girt by a leathern band, stands 
upon a raised platform which brings his waist about on a level with 
his companion's elbow ; in the easiest manner possible, Sandow puts 
his hand under the belt and walks off with his huge companion 
held at full length. Perhaps the most remarkable of the, feats per- 
formed by the latter is that known as the ' Roman Column.' A 
pole of burnished steel, some twelve feet in height, is made fast to 
the stage by cords and guys. Halfway up are two stout cross-bars, 
each projecting six inches in length, and from the summit hang two 
steel chains, ended by hooks of the same metal. These fit into rings 
affixed by straps to Sandow's legs a little below the knee. With his 
feet upon the cross-bars, and unsupported save by the chains, he 
bends the upper part of his body backwards and downwards until his 
extended hands touch the stage. On the stage lies one of the big 
dumb-bells, weighing 150 Ibs. This he grasps, and with a terrific 
effort, which makes the muscles of his arms, legs and loins start out 
like lianas on a forest tree, draws it up higher and higher, till his 
body is at right angles with the steel pole, and the dumb-bell is held 
triumphantly at arm's length above his head. The performance 
ends by Sandow making a bridge of his body upon the stage, sup- 
porting the body, chest upwards, with his arms and knees. A board, 
pierced with three holes, one of which encircles his neck, while 
the other two fit about his knees, is put upon him, and on this the 
whole of his paraphernalia, supplemented by the weights of the three 
stage carpenters and the gigantic Goliath, is piled, Sandow support- 

ing the whole weight, a total of 2,400 Ib. 900 Ibs. more than he 
supported last year at the Alhambra." 

To these feats in the Sandow-cum-Goliath performance others 
were added as the exhibition drew still larger crowds and won 
greater fervour of nightly applause. These included the lift- 
ing, while lying on his back on the stage, of the 312 Ib. dumb- 
bell with two men seated upon it a weight of some 620 Ibs. 
Another startling feat, performed by Sandow, was the swing- 
ing round and round of a dumb-bell weighing 150 Ibs. with 
two attendants suspended therefrom. The giant Goliath then 
makes his appearance, carrying a cannon, weighing 400 Ibs., 
on his shoulders ; after which Goliath stands in a square open 
frame, and Sandow from the top lifts him with one finger 
from the stage. Prolonged was the cheering which nightly 
followed this marvellous exhibition of human strength. To 
realize, adequately, what this astonishing feat is, the reader 
must remember Goliath's enormous weight, of 27 stone : his 
chest measurement is 65 inches, and his height 6 ft. 2i inches. 
The contrast between the two men Sandow and the Westpha- 
lian is sharp in the extreme. Goliath is huge, lumbering, and 
unprepossessing ; Sandow medium-sized, agile, and a model 
of compactness and symmetry. " From head to heel," as the 
Newcastle Chronicle has described him, "there is not a bad 
point in him. His features are of a bold classical type ; his 
head is well-shaped and balanced upon a white and muscular 
neck ; his shoulders are immensely broad ; and in every limb 
from mighty arm to shapely calf the muscles stand out firm 
and rounded as bosses of steel." 

Sandow's next engagement was at the London Pavilion, 
where, having parted with the ogre of Music Hall notoriety, 
ie appeared with a promising phenomenon of muscularity, 
christened Loris. "Loris," we quote from a contemporary 
journal, the Evening Post and News, "so far plays with 


such trifles as 56 Ib. and 90 Ib. weights, and does not essay a 
bigger dumb-bell than one reckoned at 140 Ibs. ; but he handles 
these with the utmost ease, and as much grace as is compat- 
ible with severe muscular effort. Sandow's display has been 
so often described that it is unnecessary to comment on it. 
He gets through his work with as little appearance of exces- 
sive effort as need be, and about both young men there is a 
pleasant absence of the theatrical swagger of many per- 
formers in the same line of business. " 



WHILE Sandow was still exhibiting at the Holborn Music 
Hall, there was talk of another trial of strength among strong- 
men. The match, on this occasion, was to be between Sandow 
and one of two brothers, named McCann, professionally 
known as "Hercules" and "Samson."* These brothers 
were Englishmen Birmingham men, we believe, then under 
engagement at the Tivoli Theatre, London. The one to be 
pitted against Sandow was known as ' ' Hercules, " or, enfamille, 
Henry McCann. The twin strongmen, it appears, entertained 
loubts as to the weight accuracy of Sandow's 312 Ib. dumb-bell, 
rhich he was wont to raise nightly at his performances, and to 

*This was not the Alsatian of that stage-name, who styles himself "the 
trongest man on earth." He, since his defeat by Sandow, added a " p " to Ms 
line, and now calls himself " Sampson." Ed, 


put the matter to test they offered to stake 50 if he (Sandow) 
" is able to lift a weight of 250 Ib. avoirdupois with one hand 
from the shoulder to arm's length above the head " a feat 
they (the McCann Brothers) deemed well-nigh impossible, 
frankly admitting, at any rate, that they could not do the feat. 

This proposal was, however, but a preliminary -skirmish, 
which at length, after interesting discussion in the columns of 
TJie Era and The Star, developed into a well- arranged and 
accepted challenge, covering not only the point above raised, 
but a threefold trial of strength, on each side, the stakes 
being 100 a side, with 50 additional to try conclusions in 
the lifting of the 250 Ib. weight. The terms of the match 
were agreed to by both parties, and the respective stakes were 
deposited at the office of The Sportsman, the match to take 
place on the afternoon of Dec. 10th, 1890. 

That the sequel of this match unfortunately brought a mis- 
carriage of justice, is a matter the writer of this, for obvious 
reasons, chiefly those of good taste, does not desire to dwell 
upon. He contents himself with saying that, as will presently 
be seen, Sandow performed four out of the six feats set down 
on the programme, while Hercules performed but three, and 
failed entirely to attempt the specific feats Sandow had put 
forward for his opponent's test. If there is doubt at all of the 
injustice of the issue, we fail to find support for it in four- 
fifths of the reports of the contest published in the London 
newspapers of the period. With all but unanimity of voice 
the journals condemn the verdict. 

Under the circumstances, it would be more than unseemly 
were we to give our own version of the contest. Happily, we 
need not here depart from the procedure we have heretofore 
acted upon, in allowing a contemporary English journal, of 
high repute, to furnish a report of the match. The following 
is from the Morning Post, Dec. 11, 1890 : 


" In fulfilment of an agreement entered into between the well- 
known strong men, Eugene Sandow and the Brothers McCann, pro- 
fessionally known as Hercules and Samson, a weight-lifting com- 
petition took place yesterday afternoon (10th Dec., 1890), on the 
stage of the Royal Music Hall, Holborn. Much interest was taken 
in the contest, which was witnessed by a large gathering of specta- 
tors, occupying all parts of the house. The competition consisted 
of six genuine feats of strength, three to be selected by Sandow, and 
three by one of the Brothers McCann, the feats to be named on the day 
of the contest, and the stakes to be 100 a side. In addition, the 
Brothers McCann offered Sandow the sum of 50, if he should succeed 
in lifting a weight of 250 Ibs. with one hand, from the shoulder at 
arm's length above the head. The trial of strength was apart from 
the competition proper, and rendered Sandow liable for 50 in the 
event of failure. Sandow also agreed to give the Brothers McCann 
50, win or lose, in consideration of their competing at the Royal 
Music Hall, where he is at present engaged. The performance was 
announced for 3 p. M., and after some delay, occasioned by the testing 
of the weights, a formality elaborately carried out upon two weighing 
machines, the curtain was raised, and disclosed Sandow and Her- 
cules ready to engage in competition. The Marquis of Queensberry, 
Professor Atkinson, and Mr. Shirley B. Jevons, who officiated as 
judges, occupied seats on the platform, as did many supporters of 
both athletes. The preliminaries briefly disposed of, Sandow pro- 
ceeded to take up the challenge to lift the 250 Ib. weight for 50 
The young German performed the feat perhaps the most difficult 
in the programme with complete success, and was loudly ap- 
plauded. The regular contest then began, Hercules setting the first 
task, which was to raise with the left hand from the ground at arm's 
length above the head a weight of 170 Ibs. The challenger accom- 
plished the feat, and Sandow was also successful at the third 
attempt, the limit allowed for each trial. Sandow then, amidst re- 
newed applause, raised a dumb-bell weighing 226 Ibs. with his right 
hand at arm's length above the head. Hercules declined to at- 


tempt the feat, his decision provoking loud cries of disapprobation 
and a good deal of hissing. He then proceeded to his own test, 
which was to raise with the left hand at arm's length above the head 
a weight of 155 Ibs. This he accomplished satisfactorily, as did 
Sandow, who, like his opponent, raised the dumb-bell twice. 

The second of Sandow's tests was to lift a weight of 198 Ibs. with the 
left hand at arm's length above the head. The challenger, however, 
could not quite succeed in straightening his arm, and gave up at the 
second attempt. Hercules, therefore, was not called upon, and was 
thus spared a great tax on his strength. The last of the three 
tests set by Hercules was to raise simultaneously two dumb-bells 
straight from the ground at arm's length above the head, the 
weight for the right hand being 120 Ibs. and that for the left 112 Ibs. 
This feat the challenger performed with apparent ease at the first 
attempt. Somewhat to the surprise of his supporters, Sandow was 
unequal to the task in which his opponent's superior weight was 
obviously an advantage. The last of the six trials was initiated by 
Sandow. It consisted in raising at arm's length above the head 210 
Ibs. with the right hand and 49 Ibs. with the left. This very trying 
feat was accomplished after two unsuccessful attempts, and called 
forth a general burst of cheering. There were loud and prolonged 
cries for McCann, but, as before, Hercules refused the challenge, heed- 
less of the ironical remarks showered upon him. This brought the 
contest to a close. The net result being that while Sandow had per- 
formed four out of the six feats, two of his own and two of his op- 
ponents, Hercules had accomplished only three his own, having 
declined to attempt two of the tests set by Sandow, and being under 
no obligation to try the third. The judges then retired to draw up 
their decision, which was considered by the vast majority -of the 
spectators to be almost a certainty for Sandow, whose splendid pro- 
portions and modest bearing, coupled with the fact that he had un- 
dergone far greater exertion than his opponent, made him a strong 
favourite. After an absence of a quarter of an hour, the judges re- 
turned, and the Marquis of Queensberry announced that Hercules 
had won the competition, while Sandow had gained the special prize 
of 50 already referred to. The decision came as a complete sur- 


prise, and was received with an outburst of dissent from all parts of 
the building. A scene of wild excitement followed, and in the gen- 
eral din, Sandow, who attempted to speak, could not obtain a hear- 
ing. At last there came a temporary lull, and a man, who proved 
to be Sandow's old rival, the Alsatian Samson, pushed his way 
to the front of the platform and declared, amidst tremendous 
cheering, that Sandow was the winner. This was evidently the 
popular verdict, the decision of the judges being incomprehensible 
to most of those present. The curtain was then lowered, and the 
spectators dispersed." 

We may be permitted one further word bearing on the ex 
traordinary and inexplicable issue of this contest. We have 
said that the judges' decision (which according to the terms 
set forth in the articles was to be final) was received with 
amazement and dissatisfaction. That no other result could 
follow the announcement of such a judgment, will be apparent 
by reiterating and briefly analyzing the facts. The articles of 
agreement say that the competition shall consist of six feats, 
three to be selected by each side. How were these competitive 
tests severally performed ? Hercules set and did his own three 
feats, to which, inferentially, he had been habituated. Sandow 
successfully performed two of these, though, unaccustomed as 
he was to them, not, it may be, so deftly as his opponent. 
Sandow, on the other hand, set three and performed two of his 
own difficult feats not one of which Hercules attempted ! 
How, in face of this result, the honour and rewards of the victory 
could go to Hercules is, the reader will no doubt say, incredible. 
It is only paltering with the public to take exception to the 
manner in which Sandow performed his work, spent as he was 

tby the prolonged and severe trial. The manner of doing the 
feats was not conditioned in the articles, and, if it had been, the 
use of the body's leverage in elevating the weights from the 
shoulder is certainly more allowable because scientific and 

hygienically safe than the tricky and vicious use of the jerk. 
The matter, however, is in a nut-shell : Hercules did three, 
and Sandow four, of the six feats in the contest ; while the 
latter essayed to do all, but, to settle another wager, was 
handicapped by having to perform an arduous feat prior to 
undertaking the competition proper. If the contest was to 
decide a matter of strength, which was the stronger man will 
be seen by a reference to the number of the tests, and more 
particularly, to the far heavier weights which Sandow was 
able to manipulate. Sandow successfully lifted in all a total 
of 1,007 Ibs., and failed to lift another 430 Ibs. Hercules, all 
told, only lifted 552 Ibs. 


THE great athlete was now to win a trophy by such a dis- 
play of weight-lifting as should set forever at rest not only any 
question regarding the match with Hercules, but effectively 
put in the shade all previous records of Mr. Sandow's prowess. 
For weeks after the match, denunciation of the judges' 
lecision had been raging in the Press, and great efforts were 
made, in which Mr. Sandow joined, to re-try the test of 
strength between the contestants, but without practical 
response from Hercules McCann or his backers. At this 
juncture, the London Athletic Institute, with Professor 
Atkinson, F.R.C.V.S., at its head, stepped generously for- 
ward and offered for competition a gold championship belt, 
to be awarded to the man who would make the best English 
record in weight-lifting. An invitation was extended to 


Sandow, who, as the virtual champion of heavy-weight lifters, 
and known to have engaged to break all previous records, was 
likely to be unapproached in the coming exhibition. The 
following account of the evening's performance, taken from 
The Sporting Life, Jan. 29th, 1891, will show how well-nigh 
unsurpassable was Sandow's feats on the occasion. The ex- 
hibition took place at the International Hall, Caf Monico, 
Piccadilly Circus, on the night of the 28th of January before a 
crowded and enthusiastic audience. The English record of 
weight-lifting to be beaten on the present occasion was that 
of Hercules McCann, the opponent of Sandow, in the contest in 
which, though not to the satisfaction of the public, as we 
have seen, the judges' verdict went in favour of that athlete. 
What the audience now assembled were to see was McCann 
not only beaten at his own game, and in the feats he specially 
affected, but the establishing of a record for Sandow which 
eclipsed all existing records and won for him the great prize 
of the evening. 


We take on the report of the Sporting Life, after intro- 
ducing the subject. 

"By this time Sandow was ready, and soon Herr Condol, his 
manager, was busy getting his heavy weights together, while masters 
of ceremonies, Mr. Bush and Frank Hinde, saw to the outside pre- 
liminaries. The judges consisted of Colonel Fox, Colonel Burchard, 
Messrs. F. A. Bettison, John W. Fleming, and J. Couttes, with 
Professor Atkinson, as referee. The latter also acted as spokesman, 
and in a few well-chosen words told how the gold belt was to be 
won. He said that the feats set by Henry (' Hercules ') McCann at 
the Royal Music Hall two months ago would be considered the stand- 
ard. Sandow then doffed his ulster and stood revealed in salmon- 
coloured tights, with a black leotard, and black leather sandals adorned 


his feet. "While he was wiping his hands, preparatory to the warm- 
ing up exercise, Shirley Jevons, one of the judges of the Sandow- 
Hercules contest, approached the stage and asked a question. He 
was instantly invited to an exalted position. Sandow, in the mean- 
time, was toying with a pair of 100 Ib. bells, one in each hand. He 
curled them up to his shoulder, and then held them aloft without 
the slightest semblance of jerk, push, or a press. The right-hand 
bell he elevated three times in succession, just to get his muscles 
wound up. 


" The real business of the evening was begun by the lifting of a 
dumb-bell weighing 179 Ibs. with the right hand. Sandow stood 
over the mass of iron, and then getting a good grip of the handle, 
lifted it shoulder high. He tried to push it upward, but after get- 
ing the bell started he had to drop it to the shoulder. The second 
attempt was successful and Hercules's record of 170 Ibs. was swept 
among the ' has beens,' the record being raised 9 Ibs. 

" Next in order came a two-handed feat. This time Sandow 
lifted a bell weighing 126 Ibs. with his right hand and 119 Ibs. with 
his left hand. It will be remembered that when Hercules put up 
his two bells of 120 Ibs. and 112 Ibs. he used a mighty jerk, and San- 
dow failed to get the bells up at all. There was no doubt about last 
night's attempt. Sandow got the two bells to his shoulder in very 
neat style. Then he started to press them up, but hesitated mo- 
mentarily. The pause looked ominous, but slowly and surely the 
arms began to straighten and in a few seconds the two masses of 
iron were held aloft, Sandow not only wiping Hercules's record off 
the slate, but making the new one in magnificent style. Mr. Jevons 
seemed to be in doubt about the arm being perfectly straight, but 
Prof. Atkinson stated that, with such enormous biceps, it was 
simply impossible to get the arm like a ram-rod. 

" The next task was the lifting of 160 Ibs. with the left hand. Her- 
cules got up 155 Ibs., and Sandow, not knowing the knack when he 
met McCann, could not exert his full strength. Last night, how- 

ever, he had no trouble. He first curled the weight up to the 
shoulder and then slowly pressed it until it was well over his head. 
Sandow dropped the weight, looking defiantly at those who were 
adversely comparing his style with that of Hercules. The glance 
was so disdainful and Spartan-like, that the whole house burst into 
a volley of applause. Prof essor Atkinson advanced to the footlights 
and said that the judges were perfectly satisfied with Sandow's per- 
formance, and that he had not only surpassed McCann's record, but 
won the championship belt. The trophy is a beautiful one. It is 
made of blue satin, heavily studded with gold plate, with medallions 
for names and portraits. In the centre is a massive shield, setting 
forth how the championship was won. 


" Not satisfied with showing his superiority over his late rival, 
Sandow set about making some new world records. His first per- 
formance was with a long-handled dumb-bell, weighing 250 Ibs. This 
was stood in front of him to give the performer a firmer grip, but 
previous to lifting the weight, Sandow asked Professor Atkinson if 
the stage was all right. He said ' yes.' 

" ' Over 400 Ibs. in one spot is a big weight,' observed Sandow. 
He referred to the bell and his own weight. Steadying himself, San- 
dow lifted the bell on to his chest, and then pushed it half-way up, 
straightening his arms as the bell rose. He stood with the enormous 
mass fully extended. Dropping the bell shoulder high, he again 
pushed it up, and tried the performance again, but the bell turned 
in his hand when it was half-way up, and he dropped it to the floor 
with a crash that made every one's teeth jar. Next the bell was 
stood endwise, and with two hands Sandow lifted it to his shoulder, 
steadying it for a moment, and then gradually pressing the bell up, 
he achieved one of the grandest pieces of dumb-bell lifting ever seen. 
This performance not only eclipses Staar's Vienna record, but 
establishes what had hitherto been a doubtful performance. 

" The next thing done was the elevating of a bar-bell weighing 
177 Ibs. Sandow had no trouble in curling this weight up to his 


shoulder, or in pressing it aloft. The work was so cleanly done 
that the spectators gave the performer round after round of applause. 
An ordinary plate bell of 161 Ibs. was the next weight handled, and 
this time the left hand was used. The curling process was used to 
bring the bell to the shoulder, and then the press was put into oper- 
ation. As the iron rose in the air a faint ' Oh ! ' was heard, and San- 
dow looked daggers at the place from which the sound emanated. It 
seemed to unnerve him for a moment, but getting a good grip of the 
bell, he held it aloft as though it were a walking-stick. When it is 
stated that this is 6 Ibs. more than Hercules put up, the magnitude of 
the feat can be realized, especially as McCann had not done half the 
work that Sandow had gone through. These are three records that 
will stand for some time. 


" The officials were so carried away, that they importuned Sandow 
to do some special feats, and the good-natured German readily com- 
plied. He stood beside the scales, watching the weighing process, 
and when they omitted to weigh the two nuts that are used as fast- 
enings on the bells, he called their attention to the oversight, remark- 
ing ' I want to get credit for all I do.' These nuts weigh over a 
pound each, so that they make quite a little difference in the avoir- 
dupois. When everything was in readiness, the plate bell, weighing 
70 Ibs. was placed in position, and Sandow raised it to his shoulder. 
Then gradually dropping the weight until his arm was at right angles 
with his body, accomplished one of the greatest feats of genuine 
strength ever known in this or any other country. The performance 
will now form a world's record in the absence of any known perform- 
ance of its kind. The left hand was treated to a 56 Ib. lift. It was 
a very clean one. 


" After a little rest, Sandow came forward for the last and probably 
the greatest feat of all. It was the simultaneous elevating of a 


Ib. weight in his right hand, and a 56 Ib. weight in the left hand. 
Raising the pair of bells to his shoulder, Sandow held them there 
until every one could see that there was no trickery about the feat. 
Then he gradually lowered his arras to a horizontal position and 
held the weights out. The ring of the 56 Ib. weight was down, so 
that no assistance could be gained from the wrist. The ease and 
coolness of the performance electrified every one, and for some 
minutes no one seemed to realize the magnitude of the achievements. 
When one individual did start the applause, it soon swelled in volume, 
and for some minutes the noise was deafening. When quietness 
was restored, Professor Atkinson stepped forward and presented 
Sandow with the championship belt, saying, ' You have not only 
eclipsed all Hercules's performances, but you have set a lot of tasks 
that will remain on record for a long time. In addition to this, you 
have given us an exhibition of pure strength that seems phenomenal. 
I have great pleasure in presenting to you the championship-belt, 
which I hope you will find pleasant to look at in after life, and I also 
hope that you may live many years to enjoy it.' Sandow's eyes 
sparkled as he took the valuable trophy, and he looked as if he 
would like to say something, but his non-familiaritywith the idioms 
of our language kept him silent, and he could return thanks only 
with his frank blue eyes." 




THE presence and successes of Mr. Sandow in England nat- 
urally quickened public interest in all manner of gymnastic 
exercises, and directed afresh the attention of the military 
authorities to physical culture, on the great athlete's system 
of training, in its bearing on recruits for the army. Sand- 
hurst, Woolwich, and Aldershot, all felt the influence of the 
vogue for muscular development aroused by the exhibition of 
strongmen in the metropolis. One of the most enthusiastic 
of Sandow's admirers is Colonel Fox, Inspector of Military 
Gymnasia for the British Army and Director of Physical 
Training at Aldershot. This officer had become much im- 
pressed with Sandow's phenomenal muscular proportions and 
enamoured of his system of training, which produced such 


results as the renowned athlete exhibits in his person. Ex- 
amining critically into the system, Colonel Fox assured him- 
self of its simple yet effective methods, and in repeated inter- 
views with Sandow obtained from him such hints as has 
induced- the gallant Colonel to adopt his exercises in the train- 
ing schools for the army. The recruit of the future, Colonel 
Fox determines, shall be a man ready trained for campaign- 
work, not, as has too often happened in the past, a man whom 
the campaign has to train. 

Imbued with these views, Colonel Fox took advantage of 
such occasion as presented itself to bring Sandow as a model 
before instructors and cadets in the military training schools ; 
and in this good work he was fortunate in enlisting the co- 
operation of not a few of the medical staff in the various 
depots of the army. One of the most intelligent and devoted 
among the latter is Surgeon-Major Deane, of the Medical Staff, 
who, on the 12th of December last (1892), delivered a lecture on 
Physical Culture at the Royal Military Academy, Woolwich, 
taking advantage of Mr. Sandow's presence to give point to 
his lecture in illustrating what he had to say on the subject 
of gymnastic anatomy. The lecture was so important, and 
interesting from the fact we have stated, that an account of 
it was published in the London Lancet (Dec. 24, 1892) the 
chief organ of the medical profession. We transcribe the re- 
port verbatim, deeming it of much interest to the intelligent 
reader : 


" On Monday, the 12th inst., a lecture on Physical Education was 
delivered in the Gymnasium of the Royal Military Academy, Wool- 
wich, by Surgeon-Major Deane, of the Medical Staff. The lecture, 
which had been previously given at the Royal Military College, 
Sandhurst, was in itself well worth listening to, but it excited a good 


deal of popular interest as far as the cadets were more especially 
concerned at any rate owing to the fact that Sandow, the strong- 
man, was in attendance and afforded in his person a practical illus- 
tration of what can be done by physical training in an individual 
naturally of powerful build in fact, an object lesson in gymnastic 
anatomy. The proceedings were under the auspices of Colonel Fox, 
the Inspector of Gymnasia at Aldershot, and there was, it need 
scarcely be added, a full attendance. The lecturer commenced by 
giving various instances in ancient, mediaeval, and modern times of 
men who were characterized by their superior development of both 
physical and mental qualities, ending by citing the present Prime 
Minister, ' as not only a man of powerful intellect, but as a hewer of 
trees.' He then went on to explain that nature had given us a cer- 
tain amount of capital or reserve on which we could draw, and added 
that this might be more clearly represented by assuming that our per- 
sonal equation was 1. This reserve force was continually being 
drawn upon, and could only be maintained by good food, sleep and 
healthy exercise both of mind and body. He pointed out that phys- 
ical exertion and exercises undertaken for strengthening and devel- 
oping the muscles were not without exercising a favourable influence 
also in developing the mind, and among other illustrations remarked 
that it was commonly recognized that the more exercise a schoolboy 
took, the more fresh and quick he became in his studies. Be this as 
it may, however, and in a sense and within limits it is undoubtedly 
true, the lecturer proceeded to say that if England was the most 
athletic nation it was also the worst physically trained one, for 
young men took up such games as cricket, football, racquets, or run- 
ning, which collectively were very good indeed in their way, but he 
pointed out that, taking them separately, they all tended to develop 
only certain parts of the body. In order to avoid this partial devel- 
opment the first thing to be noticed in studying the human frame is, 
that it is made by nature to stand erect, from which we might infer 
that all exercises should be performed in that position on the ground 
on which we stood, and not above it, as in so many of the exercises 
provided in gymnasia in England. Sandow's development had been 
attained by constant and systematic use of the muscles, and espe- 


cially by the employment of 5 Ib. dumb-bells, each exercise being 
designed to increase the power of some particular muscle or group 
of muscles. Sandow had modelled his system of training on that in 
fashion with the Greeks and Romans. He had not employed any 
modern gymnastic apparatus, but had attained his marvellous mus- 
cular development mainly by the use of light dumb-bells in connec- 
tion with observations on the anatomical arrangement and disposition 
of his muscles. 

" The lecturer then asked Sandow to perform certain feats and ex- 
ercises in illustration of what had been advanced. From this point 
'to the conclusion, the proceedings became, in a physiological and 
anatomical sense, very interesting and instructive, for rarely indeed 
can the various muscles be seen by being put into action in the liv- 
ing body as definitely and precisely as if they had been laid bare by 
a dissection in a dead one, as was the case in Sandow's exhibition of 
them. Stripped to the waist, he was able to demonstrate by differ- 
ent movements how great was the command he had over various 
muscles. Clasping his hands behind his head, he was able to make 
his biceps rise and fall in time to music. Walking round the audi- 
ence, he displayed various muscles in action as they were separately 
named. By putting his hand behind his back in such a position as 
to cause contraction of the deltoid, he can raise that muscle to a 
degree that makes the shoulder look out of all proportion to the rest 
of his body. The development of the flexor and extensor muscles of 
the upper extremities, especially of the triceps, was also noteworthy. 
He can flex or bend his wrist to such an extent that a vertical line 
drawn from the knuckles will fall on the region of the muscles of 
the forearm. The intimate physiological connection between the 
terminal nerves distributed on the skin and those of the muscles 
beneath, as well as the contractile power of the muscles themselves, 
are readily manifested ; and the normal reflexes should be capable 
of being easily demonstrated. Sandow applied the hands of some 
of the bystanders to the skin over the chest walls and other parts 
of the trunk of his body, with the result that a young fellow de- 
scribed the sensation as being like that of ' moving your hand over 
corrugated iron.' Standing in the centre of the room he showed 


his maximum and minimum chest measurement. After an efforted 
expiratory act, aided apparently by the pressure of his arms against 
the ribs laterally, a difference of twelve inches is caused by deep in- 
spiration and forcible action of the inspiratory muscles. When he 
fully inflates his chest and ' sets ' its muscles, his arms form an 
angle of about 40 with his body, owing to the size and prominence 
of the muscles under the arm and towards the back of the shoulder 
and those of the lateral aspect of the chest. The pectoral and ser- 
rati muscles are very noticeable. Taking two packs of cards together 
he attempted to tear the two packs 104 cards in twain, and, after 
spending about ten minutes in his efforts to do so, he succeeded in 
accomplishing his purpose, affording at the same time an indication 
of the great muscular strength of the hand and wrist. He failed in 
doing this at Sandhurst. In order to illustrate the development of 
the muscles of the back he took a short length of circular india-rub- 
ber of about an inch or more in diameter and fitted with handles. 
This, on being previously passed round the audience, could hardly 
be stretched by four cadets pulling at each end. Sandow, however, 
taking hold of the handles and turning his back to the audience, 
stretched the india-rubber across the back of his neck until his arms 
were extended at right angles to his body. The action of the mus- 
cles of the back caused them to look, as it was remarked, like snakes 
coiling and uncoiling themselves under his 'skin. In order to show 
his weight-lifting power he used a bar-bell weighing 270 Ibs., which, 
one of the strongest sergeants of the academy had only succeeded in 
lifting from the ground by the use of his body as well as his arms. 
Taking the bar-bell in the centre, Sandow allowed it to swing, as it 
were, by its own weight across his shoulder, from which position he 
slowly raised it r.pwards to arm's length above the shoulder. An 
arrangement was then shown for exercising the adductor muscles of 
the leg. It consisted of two upright posts and pieces of india-rubber, 
which are hooked to them and to straps which fasten round the leg 
just above the knee. The performer sits in a chair between the 
posts and tries to press the knees together by extending the india- 
rubber. A cadet who had tried the apparatus could with great 
fort just do this with three pieces of india-rubber connecting his 


legs with the posts. Sandow, having attached one more piece of 
india-rubber on each side, which was all that was available, opened 
and closed his knees with the utmost ease and without any apparent 
effort. With the view of showing his gymnastic agility, Sandow 
very neatly turned a somersault at the close of the performance. 
His personal equation, as compared with that taken on the previous 
assumption, may be represented as 50. It is scarcely necessary to 
add that, with cadets for an audience, Sandow did not lack applause 
and that there is at present a ' great run ' on all the light dumb- 
bells at the Royal Military Academy. The demonstration is, as we 
have said already, chiefly interesting from an anatomical and physio- 
logical point of view, and we have not attempted to discuss the 
merits of his system from the standpoint of military training and 
hygiene. The advantages of out-door exercises and sports in the 
way of fresh air, emulation, pleasurable excitement and variety 
over more systematic and exact methods of physical training need 
not be stated, for they are obviously on the side of the former." 

The interest manifested at Woolwich in Sandow's person- 
ality, and in his effective system of physical education, was 
also manifested at Aldershot and other regimental depots and 
places of military training throughout the British islands. 
Mention has already been made of the fact that army men 
generally had viewed with lively enthusiasm Sandow's exhi- 
bitions of feats of strength, and that his methods of physical 
instruction had been adopted by the military authorities. 
One of the most alert and intelligent of British officers to con- 
fer with the great athlete on his system of training was Lt.- 
Col. G. M. Fox, Her Majesty's Inspector of Military Gymnasia 
for Great Britain. This gentleman made Sandow's acquaint- 
ance shortly after the latter came to London to begin his 
successful professional career, and from the first was interested 
in his methods of physical training and impressed by his 
redoubtable achievements on the stage. Colonel Fox's own 
efforts had been long and earnest in seeking to improve the 


physique of recruits for the army, and his labours in this 
direction have, admittedly, borne much good fruit. Naturally, 
the gallant colonel took an interest in Sandow's advent in 
London, and he made it his business, as we have already said 
at the opening of this chapter, to inquire closely into the 
system of exercises by means of which the strongman had 
made himself strong. Learning what these exercises were, 
and the success which attended the observance of the simple 
rules which Sandow imposed upon himself in training, Colonel 
Fox put both to practical test, with gratifying results in the 
sphere of his important duties. In obtaining these effective 
and pleasing results, Colonel Fox was aided by Sandow's 
presence at Aldershot, and by his " coaching " of the Staff 
Instructors and non-commissioned officers under training at 
the depot. 

While this volume was under way, Colonel Fox was written 
to by Mr. Sandow requesting such information as he, in his 
official capacity, might deem it proper to give, anent the success 
which had attended Mr. Sandow's training instructions, and 
that officer, with ready and friendly courtesy, instantly com- 
plied with the request. The reception of Colonel Fox's 
letter was naturally gratifying to the great athlete, and 
especially so as the testimony comes from an able and dis- 
tinguished British officer, known for his zealous efforts in 
helping to raise the standard of physical efficiency in the army. 
The letter, which is subjoined, we have the kind permission 
of its writer to publish. Here it is : 




"29th July, 1893. 

"I am in receipt of your letter from New York, which 


reached me on the -23d inst. and am very glad to hear of 
your success in America. The book you speak of as being 
about to be published, should also be very successful, and ought 
to do much towards making your system of physical devel- 
opment widely -known. Since your last visit to us here my 
Staff Instructors and non-commissioned officers under train- 
ing have been most energetically practising the light dumb- 
bell exercises you so kindly showed them. 

"I am convinced that your series of exercises are excellent 
and most carefully thought out, with a comprehensive view 
to the development of the body as a whole. Any man honestly 
following out your clear and simple instructions could not 
fail to enormously and rapidly improve his physique. As two 
notable instances, I may cite the cases of Captain Wood gate, 
Superintendent of Gymnasia, Woolwich, and of Staff-In- 
structor Moss, Army Gymnastic Staff. 

"It is almost superfluous for me to add, that you yourself, 
in propria persona, are the best possible advertisement of the 
merits of your system of training and developing the human 
body. Perhaps the best part of your system that / think 
most highly of, is your insistence (1) upon the concentration of 
the will-power on ttte muscles or muscle chiefly concerned in 
an exercise ; and (2), the importance you attach to energy and 
dash, accompanied by the most rigid attention to the minutest 
details, in the actual carrying out of any and every exercise. 
As the result of twenty-five years experience, I can confi- 
dently assert that work done without strict attention to these 
two points is valueless, from either a developmental or educa- 
tional point of view, if, indeed, it be possible to differentiate 
between terms that are, a priori, of necessity almost synon- 
ymous. It is of course extremely difficult, and well-nigh 
impossible, to insure the concentration of will-power upon 
an exercise among large masses of men, whose physical train- 
ing is more or less compulsory ; and we have then to fall 


back upon the expediency of fixed apparatus to insure the 
attainment of the necessary amount of muscular exertion. 
But any individual, gifted with a fair amount of determi- 
nation, is absolutely certain to develop his physical powers 
at an extraordinarily rapid rate and with the most happy 
results to his general health and mental powers and activity, 
by following with intelligence your system. .As you very 
rightly say, it is only by bringing the brain to bear upon our 
exercises that we can hope to produce the best results with 
the shortest possible expenditure of time. 

"The absence of expensive and cumbrous apparatus is no 
small recommendation of your system, and you are thoroughly 
in the right when you assert that lasting muscular develop- 
ment, and consequent strength, can be best produced by the con- 
stant and energetic use of light dumb-bells employed in a 
sound and scientific manner. 

" Believe me, yours very truly, 
(s) " G. M. Fox, Lt.-Colonel, 

H. M. Inspector of Military Gymnasia in Great Britain. 
" Professor Eugene Sandow, 

"New York, U. S. A." 

This, the testimony of a high and competent authority, to 
the importance of Mr. Sandow's methods of physical training 
will, no doubt, be received at its proper value, supported as it 
is by the practical tests to which the system has been put. 
From other military sources, and especially from many zealous 
regimental instructors, Mr. Sandow has also received equally 
emphatic endorsement of his intelligent and effective system. 
Its fruit is, moreover, shown in the announcement, recently 
made, that the Commander-in-chief of the British army has 
sanctioned the introduction of light dumb-bells and kindred 
appliances of athletic training, and approved their use, in the 
various gymnasia at the home-depots of regimental districts 
and cavalry riding schools. 



THE title of this chapter is chiefly to record an incident, of 
an amusing kind, which happened to Mr. Sandow as one of 
the many millions of lodgers in the great metropolis. What 
we have to relate is a case of "bringing down the house "- 
though not quite in the professional sense and the con- 
sequent proof that the law, in England at any rate, is even 
stronger than the strongman. We shall not spoil the story 
by drawing upon the bald recital of what happened, from 
the police court records, but leave the reader to gather the 
facts from a sprightly editorial in the London Globe of 
Nov. 13th, 1890. All we need say, is that Mr. Sandow, 
while one day exercising in his rooms, did direful damage 
to the ceilings, walls and furniture in the house in which 
he abode, and not agreeing quickly with his landlady while 


he was in the way with her, was summoned before trie 
judge to atone for the wreck he had occasioned and be admon- 
ished to rehearse his feats, for the future, in some lonely, 
sequestered spot. Says the Globe ; 


" The strongman has been very much in evidence of late years, 
but little light has been hitherto let in upon him in his domestic 
relations. Yesterday's law reports, however, go some way towards 
supplying the deficiency. The case of Brackenbury v. Sandow, de- 
cided in the Westminster county-court the other day, will be pe- 
rused with interest by all lodging-house keepers. This class of the 
community are commonly supposed to be able to take excellent care 
of themselves, but from the present case it is clear that even a Lon- 
don lodging-house keeper is capable of entertaining a strongman 
unawares. We say this advisedly, for it is obvious that no 
landlord, unless his house was built specially for the purpose, 
would be so rash as to welcome in the capacity of a lodger a gentle- 
man who is in the habit of sporting with dumb-bells weighing 312 Ibs. 
Having done so, however, and having been so indiscreet as to bouse 
the strongman on an upper storey, the landlord in question soon 
realized in a very practical way the risks to which he had exposed 
himself. The ceilings and his patience gave out about simulta- 
neously, and litigation set in, with the result that Mr. Sandow, who 
did not appear, was ordered to pay damages to the extent of 4, 12s. 
6'?. Hitherto the professional musician has been the chief bete noir 
of the landlord, but now the strongman must be added to his index 
expurgatorius. The moral of the episode is fairly transparent. Al- 
ways ascertain, if your calling be that of a letter of lodgings, 
whether your intended lodger be a professional follower of Hercules 
or not, and in the event of his being so, never offer him quarters 
except in the basement. Perhaps in the ' ideal flats for professional 
men,' of which we have heard a good deal of late, suitable provision 
will be made for tenants of this description." 


Sandow's possession of the crown of strength was, about 
this time, amusingly perhaps even tragically illustrated in 
another way. He had run over to Paris on a short holiday, 
and there met an old schoolmate staying at the Grand Hotel. 
After a long chat over old times and the memories of their 
boyhood days, the friend suggested a game at billiards, which 
Sandow agreed to, adding, however, that he was quite out of 
practice and would be found but a poor player. This, in his 
friend's eyes, was of little moment, for, as he said, the pleasure 
of being together again would give sufficient interest to the 
game. The billiard-room was crowded and it was with diffi- 
culty the two old schoolfellows obtained a table. They hadn't 
been playing long when a party of Frenchmen came and stood 
alongside, evidently eager to get possession of the table. One 
of the number, observing Sandow's indifferent playing, made 
a rather offensive audible remark, which Sandow's friend re- 
sented, but Sandow himself interposed and prevented the al- 
tercation going further. Later in the evening, the two friends 
retired to the restaurant for supper, and when they had taken 
their seats they found themselves in close proximity to the 
party of Frenchmen with whom they had all but come into 
collision an hour or two before. 


During supper, when the wine began to flow, one or two of 
the Frenchmen became first hilarious, then daring and saucy. 
Sandow and his friend had taken little notice of the party 
until a remark was made by one of the French roysterers, 
pointed at the young Germans, and conveying an insulting 
reference to their alien tongue. At this, Sandow's friend, 
becoming angry, shot a retort back at the Frenchmen, when 
one of the latter jumped up and menacingly shook his fist at 
the Germans. Sandow motioned the excited Gaul to sit down, 


telling him, in French, that it would be better for him to keep 
quiet. There was something in the nonchalant way in which 
Sandow had given this counsel that irritated the Frenchman, 
and he crossed to the Germans' table and gave Sandow a blow 
in the face. His friend squared up at this outrage, but San- 
dow again interposed and coolly turned to the Frenchman and 
cautioned him, at his peril, not to strike again. He did strike, 
however, and, this time, with a sharp blow on Sandow's nose, 
which set it bleeding arid stained a new light suit of tweed 
which the athlete wore. So far, Sandow had put a rigid re- 
straint upon himself, but angered at the soiling of his clothes, 
and to keep his friend from engaging in a general tussle, he, 
in an instant caught the Frenchman by his legs and the back 
of his neck and brought his knees into repeated and ignomini- 
ous contact with his nose. He then rapped his fundament on 
a table with such force as to break the latter and set his fool- 
ish aggressor unconscious on the floor. The chastisement was 
the work of a minute, but it sufficed the now alarmed French- 
men, who were dum founded at the sharp and unexpected 
reprisals and felt that their friend's attack was unjustifiable 
and unwarranted. Their concern, however, was great for 
their prostrate companion, who had to be taken to an hospital, 
while Sandow and his friend gave themselves up to the gen- 
darmes whom the waiter and his master had summoned. 

For two weeks after his admonishment by the angry athlete, 
the titled Frenchman for it transpired that he was of high 
birth languished in an hospital ward, inwardly profiting, 
meanwhile, by the lesson that had been administered him. San- 
dow's explanation to the police saved him from imprisonment, 
and, regretting the severity of the chastisement he had inflicted, 
he did not fail, while he remained in the gay capital, to call 
daily upon the now penitent, but not convalescent, aggressor. 
The incident had a sequel, which we have now to relate. 



One evening, while exhibiting at the Tivoli Theatre, on his 
return to London, a card was brought to Sandow from a 
gentleman seated in one of the boxes accompanied by a party 
of friends. On the card was penciled ' the admiring homage ' of 
the gentleman whose name it bore, with the request that Mr. 
Sandow would honour the party with his presence at the close 
of his performance. Mr. Sandow complied and was warmly 
received by the gentleman and his friends, who extorted from 
him a promise that, after his bath at the close of the exhi- 
bition, he would join the party at supper at the Hotel Savoy, 
whither they proposed to adjourn. There he learned that the 
gentleman who had pressed upon him the invitation was he 
with whom he had had the encounter at Paris ! This gentle- 
man, who had only through his visit to the Tivoli discovered 
his erstwhile chastiser, was now profuse in his apologies to 
him for his previous rudeness ; and with the utmost frankness 
and cordiality he explained to his friends the motive he now 
had to make atonement. Mr. Sandow met his host in the 
same spirit of amity and greatly enjoyed the evening he spent 
with him and his friends. Next day, at his rooms the strong- 
man received by the hand of a valet a little box, which on 
opening he found to contain, besides a polite note begging his 
acceptance of the souvenir, a gold chronometer, by Bennett, 
of very considerable value, with a combination of ingenious 
mechanical adaptations, for striking the hours, minutes and 
seconds, a perpetual calendar, and other curious and elaborate 
contrivances. The gratification of Mr. Sandow may be im- 
agined, for the handsome gift, it need hardly be said, came 
from his Parisian friend, whom he had once used so roughly. 
The chronometer, we may add, is the great athlete's daily 
companion and one of the most highly-prized of his souvenir 



Another incident, of an amusing kind, may here be cited 
to illustrate how ugly a customer Sandow may be found 
should occasion call for the exercise by him of his strength. 
The " noblest Eoman of them all " if the phrase will be par- 
doned had been spending a holiday, in the spring of 1892, 
in some of the cities of Italy and Southern France. If the 
truth must be told, he had been beguiled to Monaco, where 
he had won at that gambling resort 25,000 francs, and, as a 
matter of course, had also speedily lost that sum with con- 
siderable additions to it. As he was wending his way back 
to England, he had occasion to stop at Nice, where he had had 
considerable personal effects, consisting of about two thousand 
pounds' worth of jewellery including prize medals, souvenirs, 
and other valuables, which he desired to have sent on to 
London. The whole were packed in a trunk and sent to the 
railway station at Nice for its despatch to England. Sandow 
had himself come to the station to arrange for the transmis- 
sion of the box ; but before conferring with the agent he was 
accosted by two men on the platform who proffered their 
services as interpreters, and so led the railway people to infer 
that they were friends of the athlete. Sandow, however, did 
not require their services, as he himself spoke French, and he 
turned from them to the porter and gave his own instructions 
for the despatch of the trunk, getting into a carriage as he 
did so, and left for Paris. In due course, he arrived at the 
gay capital, and there made a halt on his journey. While 
there he learned from his agent at London that the box had 
been received, but, on opening it, it was found that the val- 
uables had been abstracted, and their weight partly substi- 
tuted by half-a- hundred of bricks ! On receipt of this start- 
ling intelligence, Sandow at once returned to Nice and in- 
stantly sought the railway porter to whom he had intrusted 


his valuables. From this person he learned that when he had 
set off for Paris, the two men who had addressed Sandow 
on the platform, and whom the porter had taken for his 
friends, had come to him, as they said at Mr. Sandow's request, 
and got possession of the box, saying that they had his in- 
structions' to forward it through another channel. The porter, 
not doubting the story, delivered the box, and the men drove 
off with it the last the railway people had seen of it. Pro- 
voked at the way they had been imposed upon, the railway 
authorities placed the porter at Mr. Sandow's disposal in the 
efforts now made to get on the track of the depredators, who 
were supposed to be still in the neighbourhood, and endeavour 
to recover the lost possessions. This assistance, after a day 
or two's search, was effectual, and the thieves were espied on 
the street. Sandow, who, meanwhile, had refrained from 
calling the police to his assistance, now acted without their 
aid. He pounced upon them suddenly, and caught each man 
firmly by the back of the neck. When they recovered from 
their surprise and began to struggle to get free, the strong- 
man brought their two heads repeatedly in contact, until 
unconsciousness rendered one man limp and fright quieted the 
other. Without quitting his hold of the men, Sandow dragged 
them both to the station, into which he flung them, to the 
surprise, and amusement of the police. It took some days for 
the miscreants to recover their senses and appear before the 
court : in the meantime, they owned to the crime they had 
committed, and on their persons were found the pawn-tickets 
which enabled Sandow to recover his impounded effects. 
With the recovery of his property he refrained from prosecu- 
ting its despoilers, content that by his rough handling of 
them, the reader will say, he had taught them a sharp enough 
lesson. Itis something to be one's own law-enforcer. 



THAT Mr. Sandow, a man of such mighty muscle, with un- 
iralleled drawing powers, should be tempted of impresarios 
fill a golden engagement in the New World, will be taken 
a matter of course by readers of this book. Sandow's 
lationality was in itself a drawing card, for the German 
element is large in the United States ; large also is the class 
dthin the Republic that takes a lively interest in athletics. 
?hese several facts were doubtless known to Mr. Henry S. 
ibbey, who made the contract with Mr. Sandow fora length- 
ened engagement on this side the Atlantic. Hence it was 
dth no surprise that we heard of the renowned athlete's 
ieparture from England to make a professional tour of this 
Continent. Nor were we surprised on other grounds, for the 
roung Prussian, incited by youthful ambition, and possessing 


the energy and enthusiasm of his nation, was himself desirous 
of seeing the New World and its people ; and so he readily 
embraced the overture made to him by the well-known and 
enterprising theatrical manager. The result of the agree- 
ment to both interested parties has already justified the 
anticipations each looked for from the visit ; while public 
interest, whetted as it had been by the Old World fame of the 
great athlete, has, so far, in the three chief cities of the 
United States, been widely gratified. 

Mr. Sandow opened his American engagements at the Casino, 
New York, in June of the present year (1893). He has subse- 
quently appeared at the Tremont Theatre, Boston, and at the 
Trocadero, Chicago. From the first his exhibitions have 
been entirely successful, despite the fact that he arrived at 
the close of the theatrical season. Drawn to them were not 
only large and delighted audiences, including thousands of 
sporting men and amateurs and professionals devoted to the 
study of athletics, but crowds also of medical men, physiolo- 
gists and anatomists of note, who viewed with critical but 
admiring eye the great athlete's wonderful muscular develop- 
ment and surpassingly fine physique. Instructors and pupils 
from the New York gymnasia and from all manner of ath- 
letic associations came to the Casino in full force and were 
enthusiastic in their applause of Sandow's varied feats. Nor 
was the Press, with its wonted enterprise and ready intelli- 
gence, less cordial in its reception of the wonderfully-endowed 
newcomer, whose advent was hailed with such general and 
hearty acclaim. Notable among the journalistic greetings of 
Sandow in the New York Press were those which appeared in 
the great metropolitan organs, The World and The Herald. 
Each of these newspapers devoted much space, in successive 
issues, to biographical and professional facts respecting the 
renowned strongman, with accounts of interviews and other 
descriptive matter bearing on Mr. Sandow's rare physical 


endowment and extraordinary performances. The World 
published two such articles, both illustrated, one chronicling 
Sandow's feats and giving an abstract of his various Old 
World achievements ; the other detailing a physical examina- 
tion of the strongman by a scientific expert, Dr. D. A. Sargent, 
Director of the Hemenway Gymnasium, Harvard University. 
The Herald also published an interesting illustrated article 
on the dSbut of "this modern marvel of physical power, beside 
whom the average man is puny," to quote the journal's apt 
characterization, with the recital of an interview by its re- 
porter. From these representative newspapers we shall tak 
the liberty of drawing some facts of probable interest to the 


In the first of The World's articles (June 18, 1893), its readers are 
thus introduced to Sandow. We quote from a passage in which the 
reporter has expressed the opinion that while nature had set out to 
make " a conspicuously fine job " of Sandow's physical frame, he had, 
by training, " made himself a great deal better man than Nature 
intended him to be." " In preparing the mind for -a description and 
conception of this wonderful human being," says The World, " it is 
necessary to abandon all former notions concerning possibilities in 
physical development. Nothing that has ever been seen in New 
York can be used as a standard of comparison to measure the won- 
derful young German who has just come here. Compared with 
Sandow, Corbett, the fighter, is like a lean spring-chicken beside a 
well-muscled bull-dog, and the professional strong man of circuses 
and museums, with their pretentious bunches of muscle, seem weak 
and unimpressive. 

"A proper way to introduce Sandow is to outline briefly some of 
the things which he can do. Sandow can lift a 500-pound weight 
with his middle finger. He promptly took up in London an indi- 
vidual who bet that he could not perform this feat. 

" He can break good-sized iron rods across his arms and legs, but 


does that rarely because he considers the achievement trivial. He 
takes in his right hand a dumb-bell with an enormous sphere at 
either end. In each of these spheres a man is concealed. He lifts 
the dumb-bell and the two men above his head with one hand. 

"He can take a good-sized man with one hand, and without any 
sign of effort use the man's body for a musket and give an imitation 
of a regulation drill. He can oblige any friend he has in the world 
by letting the friend sit on the palm of his hand and then lifting 
him in the air above his head as easily as the average man would 
lift a small-sized dog. 

" He places himself upon the floor with his chest upward and sup- 
ported only by his hands and feet, his body forming a bridge. A 
gang-plank is placed across his chest and three horses stand upon 
this at one time, with no support except that which the chest offers. 
Two of the horses are small horses and the third is not enormous ; 
but the weight of the smallest horse would more than satisfy the 
chest of the ordinary strongman. 

" He has wrestled with three men at one time, all expert wrestlers, 
all bigger than he, and has stretched first one and then another flat, 
using one hand to a man and incidentally preventing the other two 
from tripping or otherwise throwing him. 

" Sandow's actual feats of strength, however, do not make up his 
strongest claim to attention and veneration. The great point is 
that the man who does all of these things is only 5 feet 8 inches 
high, and does them because he has developed to the highest point 
every separate muscle in his body. 

" There are thousands of men in the world who would tower from 
six inches to a foot above him and who weigh nearly twice as much, 
but it is not likely that any one could equal even the sheer brute 
strength of this German bunch of muscle which weighs exactly 200 
pounds, is 5 feet 8^- inches in height, and within 2 inches of 5 feet 
around the chest, when fully expanded. 

" The measurements of the man's chest and waist perhaps give the 
best conception of his wonderful conformation. Around the waist 
he measures twenty-nine inches ; around the chest, when fully ex- 
panded, as has been said, he measures fifty-eight inches ; his waist, 


therefore, is not much bigger around than Mrs. Langtry's, and his 
chest is a good deal bigger around than Grover Cleveland's. Grover 
Cleveland, Mrs. Langtry, and the entire public must be interested in 
such figures as these. They are based on accurate and careful 
measurements. It is needless to say, that when this young man 
spreads out his chest and draws in his waist, his body from the 
shoulders down to the hips, looks like a very sharp wedge of pink 
muscle. The writer, who called upon Mr. San do w and examined 
carefully his mental and physical make-up, has had the pleasure of 
studying numerous types of the muscular human being. He has 
studied the finest specimens of manhood to be found in the German 
gymnasiums, but he experienced an entirely new and unexpected 
series of sensations upon beholding Eugene Sandow. 

" In private life this young man is a very pleasing type of the sim- 
ple-minded German. His head is shaped exactly like the heads on 
the old statues of Hercules. The forehead is low and rather broad. 
The head is not quite straight up and down behind, but with only 
slight development. It is thickly covered with a short crop of tight 
golden curls, each one looking as though it had been specially, 
fixed up with a hot iron ; but the curliness is perfectly natural. The 
impressive muscular feature about Sandow, as seen fully clothed, is 
his neck. This neck, which is padded on either side with muscles 
about as big as a young girl's wrists, is nearly twenty inches round, 
almost as big round as the head above it. It wouldn't be a bad 
neck for a small bull. It is a wonderful neck for any man. 
His face is a pleasant face ; his eye, which is gray, shows the char- 
acter which has made him the man he is and which enables him to 
attempt with absolute confidence and calmness the various feats 
that fill his audiences with delight and make him rich. 

" Sandow has a method of his own to develop the muscles. It 
consists in various exercises with two dumb-bells weighing five 
pounds each. He declares that with these dumb-bells he has de- 
veloped, not only the muscles which everybody can see on the out- 


side of his body, but internal muscles which strengthen the walls of 
his chest, enable his heart and other organs to endure great strains 
and assure him a long life. He does not take special care of himself 
in the way of eating or drinking. Beer and wine are not strangers 
to him and tobacco is his intimate friend. He leaves brandy alone, 
however, as he does similar poisons. An interesting feature of San- 
dow's method of training is that he can train very well sitting on a 
chair. He can sit down and read a paper and keep his muscles 
working all the while, so that all development of fat is rendered 
impossible and his strength is kept up to the highest pitch. 

" Sandow is living now (June, 1893), at No. 210 West Thirty-eighth 
street. With him there lives a friend, Mr. Martinus Sieveking, who 
is a very able pianist. Mr. Sieveking is a Dutchman. His musical 
compositions have already attracted considerable attention in Lon- 
don, and he is an unusually brilliant artist. He and Sandow are 
bosom friends. He thinks that Sandow is a truly original Hercules, 
and that no one has ever lived to be compared to him. Sandow 
thinks that Mr. Sieveking is the greatest pianist in the world and 
that he is going to be greater. It is pleasant to see them together. 
Mr. Sieveking, who is a very earnest musician, practices from seven 
to eight hours a day on a big three-legged piano. He is decidedly 
in earnest. He practices in very hot weather stripped to the waist. 
While he plays, Sandow sits beside him on a chair listening to the 
music and working his muscles. He is fond of the music, and Sie- 
veking likes to see Sandow's muscles work. Both enjoy themselves 
and neither loses any time. 

"Mr. Sandow, at the suggestion of his friend, Mr. Sieveking, was 
kind enough to demonstrate the fact that even in his every-day 
apparel it is possible for him to manifest his strength. He held up 
his right hand and requested the visitor to grasp his forearm. Then 
he closed his hand and bent his muscle till a lump rose up on his 
arm above the wrist which was certainly as big as a very large 
orange. That lump represented the force which Sandow could put 
into the act of closing his fingers. A feature of this young giant's 
life is the constant desire of those with whom he comes in contact 
to compete with him in some way or other. Since his arrival in 


New York he has already had one challenge which, however, was 

" Sandow's performance began on the Casino stage at 10:30. It 
followed the performance of Dixey. Incidentally a fine chance to 
compare Sandow with the average, well-developed man is offered 
each night. Dixey, as Adonis, at the end of his performance takes 
his place on a pedestal and poses as a statue. The curtain goes 
down and rises again to reveal Sandow also posing. New York has 
come to look upon Dixey as a fairly well-made young man. When 
New York has seen Sandow after Dixey, however, New York will 
realize what a wretched, scrawny creature the usual well-built young 
gentleman is compared with a perfect man. Sandow, posing in va- 
rious statuesque attitudes, is not only inspiring because of his enor- 
mous strength, but absolutely beautiful as a work of art as well. 

" One look at him is enough to make the average young man thor- 
oughly disgusted with himself, and to make him give up his nightly 
habit of standing in front of his glass in his pajamas and swelling 
his chest with pride. Sandow's performance showed what swelling 
the chest can amount to when it is properly done. He expelled the 
air from his lungs so that the walls of his chest collapsed and his 
body seemed to shrink together. Then he gradually began to fill him- 
self with air and to swell out the muscles of his chest. The develop- 
ment was so tremendous that it was almost painful to look at. Be- 
low his arm-pits the muscles swelled out so that his arms were forced 
outward and hung at an angle of 40 degrees with his body. 

" The regulation performance that Sandow goes through with now 
is lifting two men hidden in a dumb-bell above his head with one 
hand, allowing three horses to stand balanced on his chest, playing 
with heavy weights, and lifting a man up in an extraordinary way 
by the muscles of his back, a feat which is called in the programme 
the Roman Column.' To prove that agility accompanies his great 
strength, he takes in each hand a weight of fifty-six pounds and, 
with his feet tied together and his eyes blindfolded, turns a somer- 
sault backward. 


" Five minutes after the curtain went down Sandow, clothed only 
in his muscular development, was found crouching in a rubber bath- 
tub in his dressing-room, while an attendant with a rubber pipe 
doused huii with cold water. That was the chance to study San- 
dow. At first he appeared annoyed because the end of his perform- 
ance found him in a perspiration. He wished it to be understood 
that it was not his performance of lifting two men with one hand or 
holding three horses on his chest that made him perspire. It was 
the heat on the stage, and he called up his assistant as witness. The 
assistant, who had nothing to do but to help half a dozen other men to 
carry weights, was wet through with perspiration. This fact relieved 
Sandow's pride. He said that in winter he never perspired at all, 
and that he did not strain himself. 

" Taking his visitor's hand he placed it upon his heart, which had 
lately helped to support three horses, and called attention to the fact 
that there was no violent beating. In fact, the action of the heart 
could not be felt at all through the thick coating of muscle. 


" When he had had his bath, Sandow, with the fond pride of a 
mother displaying a large family of children, proceeded to display 
his collection of muscles, one at a time, and to dwell modestly but 
lovingly upon their merits. He held up his right arm and made the 
various muscles move about. The picture of the arm, which is 
often reproduced, gives but a faint conception of what it is in real life. 
There are very few men in New York who have as much muscle in 
both legs as Sandow has in that arm. The marvellous thing about 
it is the development of the triceps. It is the triceps which is used 
in extending the arm and giving a blow. The triceps in Sandow's 
arm is very much bigger than the calf of an ordinary strongman's 
leg. Sandow called attention especially to his triceps, because at the 
Manhattan Club he had been asked whether his great exertions had 
not made his muscles stiff and hard, thus rendering him incapable 
of hitting a hard blow. He showed tremendous speed in his move- 
ments in illustrating his hitting power, and incidentally declared 



Sarony P' 


Sarony Photo. 

that he would undertake, with his knuckles protected, to drive his 
fist through a two-inch board. There is no doubt that he could do 
it. There is also no doubt that he could kill any man with a blow 
very easily. He could crush in the chest, break the neck, or fracture 
the skull of any man, and not use one-half his strength. Sandow 
was informed that in this country men got as much as $40,000 for a 
single fight. He admitted that that was a shorter road to wealth 
than the 50,000 dollars a year which he makes by exhibiting him- 
self, but declared that he never would be a prize-fighter. ' You can't 
engage in a prize-fight and be a gentleman,' said Sandow. ' I care 
more about keeping my friends than making money.' 

" Sandow went on to call attention to certain muscles which in 
most men are but slightly developed or have practically no existence. 
He swelled out his chest, and on either side of it five big muscles 
rose up. It looked as though five ribs on either side were coming 
through the skin. As a matter of fact, the ribs were not visible. 
What was seen was the muscle which lies over each rib, and which 
on the ordinary man is entirely undeveloped. Each of these muscles 
was twice as big round as a man's thumb, and the five on each side 
stood out as distinctly as though a great hand had been placed on 
either side of the athlete's chest. 

" Xext, the strongman pointed with pride to a muscle on the out- 
side of his leg just below the waist. Each muscle, as he came to it, 
he called by its scientific name, for Sandow has studied medicine at 
Brussels, and understands anatomy. This particular muscle on the 
hip with most men amounts to nothing. In Sandow's case it is about 
as big as the leg of an old-fashioned rocking-chair. 

"To show the muscles of his back, Sandow stood erect with his 
arms behind his head. The way the muscles are piled up on his. 
back is most ingenious. They are so thick, so deep, that the back- 
bone, which is quite invisible, runs along at the bottom of a deep 
gorge, which extends from the nape of the neck to the loins. 

" Mr. Sandow was especially pleased with the muscle which he 
called his trapesius muscle, that is the muscle which runs from the 
neck over the shoulder to the top of the arm, and which accounts for 
the fact that all men of extraordinary strength have sloping shoulders. 


A man without sloping shoulders is a man with poor muscular 
development. Sandow's shoulders slope as much as it is possible for 
them to do. His neck seems to melt away into his chest. His trape- 
sius muscle, which he fondly loves, is as thick through as the back of 
a man's hand, as broad, and thicker in some places. 

" It will be observed that in some of his pictures Mr. Sandow 
appears to have a corrugated stomach. This is due to the perfect 
development of a set of muscles destined to protect the abdomen, but 
neglected and undeveloped with most of us. On Sandow's stomach 
these muscles stand out distinctly, each about as big as a man's 
wrist. He invited his visitors to run their closed knuckles violently 
up and down this collection of stomach muscles. The effect was 
that of rubbing the knuckles up and down an old-fashioned wash- 

"From his teeth, with which he can support the weight of a 
good-sized horse, down to his feet, Sandow is thoroughly developed. 
Every muscle stands out by itself and appears to be under perfect 

" His object is to bring out and utilize all the strength that is in 
him, and his success, which is absolute, makes him beyond ques- 
tion, so far as is known and so far as record goes, the nearest to 
physical perfection of any living man. It will be a good thing for 
young men and for boys to study Sandow. It will fill them with 
ambition to be like him and may add to their wealth, which, in his 
case, he thoroughly deserves. 


" An interesting fact is the constant increase in Sandow's strength. 
He is very much more powerful now than he was when he went to 
London a few years ago and easily defeated Samson and his pupil, 
Cyclops, then reputed to be the two strongest men in the world. 
That particular contest, which was umpired by the Marquis of 
Queensberry and Lord De Clifford, attracted one hundred thousand 
Londoners to the neighbourhood of the Aquarium and packed that 
institution as it had never been packed before. It is difficult to find 


in history any man to compare with Sandow, unless one goes back 
to the far-off days when Samson was edited by Delilah. Thomas 
Topham, the famous strongman of England, may have been as good 
a man as Sandow in actual brute strength ; but he was very much 
bigger in build and far less interesting as a demonstration of the 
possibilities of muscular development. Topham is the man who, 
iccording to tradition, pulled successfully against two horses, 
carried off a sleeping watchman in his sentry-box to leave him 
in a graveyard, lifted three casks of water at one time weigh- 
ing eighteen hundred pounds, and lived in terror of a very small 

The New York Herald, of Sunday, June 18th, also devoted 
a number of columns to Sandow's advent in the New World, 
with an interesting, though necessarily brief, account of his 
career. Having ourselves dealt, in the preceding pages, with 
the biography, our extract from the Herald will be confined 
within the following brief limits : 


" Perhaps the strongest man," writes the Herald, " whom the world 
has seen since Samson destroyed himself along with three thousand 
Philistines, is in New York just now. He is not slaying thousands 
with the jawbone of an ass, carrying off ponderous gates like those 
of Gaza on his shoulders, nor pulling down stone houses on himself 
and others, but he is doing feats in lifting dumb-bells, men and 
horses, that make cold chills chase one another up and down the 
spine of the beholder. 

" Eugene Sandow, this modern marvel of physical power, beside 
rtiom the average man is puny, made his American debut in the 

sino recently before a private gathering of about two hundred 
persons, many of whom were medical men. It was hard for the 
spectators, when a calcium light was turned on the figure standing 
Dn a pedestal in the back of the darkened stage, to believe that it 
was indeed flesh and blood that they beheld. Such knots and 


bunches and layers of muscle they had never before seen other than 
on the statue of an Achilles, a Discobolus, or the Fighting Gladiator. 


" The face was that of little more than a boy smooth, with rosy 
cheeks and a little blond moustache. The chin, however, was square 
and heavy. The neck was massive, and the shoulders seemed a 
yard apart. The arms looked as though hickory-nuts and walnuts 
had somehow been forced under the skin, causing it to bulge out in 
abrupt lumps. Layers of muscle, three inches thick, covered the 
chest, and on the abdomen was a succession of rolls of muscle that 
one could tell even from a distance of several yards were hard as 

" Sandow's vital organs are undoubtedly as sound as his muscles. 
The capacity of his lungs is simply wonderful. The popular idea 
that strong men develop their muscular system at the expense of 
the vital organs is fallacious. TO increase the size of the muscles 
the circulation must be increased, and this implies, of course, in- 
creased work by heart and lungs. The functional capacity of these 
organs is therefore increased proportionately to the increase of 

" Sandow, in ordinary street dress, gives no indication of the won- 
derful power he possesses. There are many athletes and oarsmen 
who look just as strong as he to the casual observer. It is when 
one touches him or sees him stripped that one gets an idea of his 
vast strength. 


" His muscles, when flexed, are as unyielding to the touch as iron, 
When Sandow strikes himself on a muscle with his hand, it gives 
forth a sound like wood. An idea of the size of Sandow's muscles 
may be gained by the measurement of various parts of his body. 
The figures, as Sandow gave them to me, are as follows : 

"Neck, 18 inches ; biceps, 19 inches ; forearm, 17 inches ; chest, 
normal, 52 inches ; contracted, 46 inches ; expanded, 58 inches ; 


waist, 29 inches; thigh, 26 inches; calf, 18 inches; height, 5 feet 
8 inches ; weight, 199 pounds.* 

" Sando w does not believe in elaborate training. ' Under my system 
of getting strong,' said he, ' a man need but follow his ordinary course 
of life and take reasonably good care of himself. No dietetic regula- 
tions are needed. Let him eat and drink whatever suits him. As 
for sleeping, I don't think it makes any great difference when he 
sleeps, provided he gets sleep enough. I myself go to bed any time 

jtween midnight and three o'clock in the morning. I eat when- 
ever, whatever, and as much as I please. I drink all I can get. 
Yes ; beer, ale, wines, champagne, cognac everything. But I never 
drink to excess. I take a very cold water bath every morning and 
another after my performance at night. Exercise ? Yes, a little 
what I get in my regular performance.' 


; Sandow says he is getting stronger every year, and expects to 
keep increasing in strength for years to come. Before he gives up 
professional work, he says he will write a book explaining his 
system. He will also give personal instructions to those who want 
to become strong. 

" The feats which Sandow performs on the stage seem nothing 
less than marvellous. He handles fifty-six pound dumb-bells as a 
schoolboy would handle weights of two pounds each. He is not in 
the least muscle-bound and turns somersaults and handsprings with 
the ease of a professional acrobat. One of his tricks is to turn a 

3k somersault with his feet tied together, his eyes blindfolded, and 

fifty-six pound dumb-bell in each hand. 

" In his nightly performance at the Casino, four men carry on the 
stage an immense dumb-bell, the bar of which is of brass about four 
feet long, and the bells, which are hollow, three feet in diameter 
With great effort Sandcw raises the bell over his head with one arm. 
then dropping it suddenly, catches it with both hands and places it 

* Mr. Sandow's present measurements are as follows : Neck, 18 inches ; 
forearm, 16 inches ; biceps, 19 inches ; chest relaxed, 40 inches ; normal, 47 
inches : expanded, 61 inches ; waist, 28 inches : thigh, 27 inches ; calf, 18 
inches ; height, 5 feet 8 inches ; weight, 196 pounds. EDITOR. 


lightly on the floor, whereupon the attendants release a man from 
each bell. The total weight of the apparatus and men is about 
three hundred and twenty pounds. 


" Another feat is that of supporting with his arms and legs the 
weight of three horses. Sandow rests on his hands and feet with 
his back towards the floor. A heavy wooden platform is then placed 
on him, resting on his shoulders, chest, and knees. This platform 
is constructed to fit about the neck to prevent its slipping or moving 
in any way. " A long wooden bridge is then placed across the plat- 
form, and three trained horses walk upon the bridge. They remain 
there for about a minute, while every muscle of the giant underneath 
stands out like whipcord. The weight of the animals and apparatus 
is said to be 2,600 pounds." 




INTEREST in Sandow as a physiological study has always heeu 
intense. The finely-formed limbs, the great thews, the Ti- 
tanic strength, and the splendid heart and lung-power of the 
famous athlete, have been the admiration of countless medical 
men and artists in the nude. What has, also, especially struck 
the medical expert, and chiefly, the anatomist, is Sandow's 
wonderful power of relaxing antagonistic muscles and bring- 
ing each into individual play. His facility in this respect is 
phenomenal, and shows how thorough, and at the same time 
intelligent, has been his training. A hardly less notable 
feature in the great athlete is his suppleness of limb and the 
shapeliness and symmetry of his person. Herein we see the 
secret of Greek art, as modelled in its famous sculpture, for 
nature may be trusted to impart physical beauty where the 


conditions of bodily life and exercise are favourable to the 
highest forms of human development. Sandow's attraction 
to those we have referred to, and to all lovers of the strong 
and the beautiful, may therefore be comprehended, for "creeds 
decay, scholarship grows musty, and the wisdom of one 
generation becomes the foolishness of the next ; but beauty 
endures forever." 


Among those in America who have made Sandow a physi- 
ological and anatomical study, is Dr. D. A. Sargent, M. A., 
the skilled and enthusiastic Director of Gymnastics at Har- 
vard, previously referred to. This eminent authority in 
athletics, at the request of the New York World, made a 
professional examination of Sandow, and subjected him to a 
series of elaborate measurements and interesting tests, such 
as are applied to the Harvard undergraduates entering the 
Hemenway Gymnasium. Dr. Sargent has courteously per- 
mitted the publication in these pages of his report, which is 
here appended ; and we owe our obligations to the World for 
the use we also make of the article which appeared in that 
journal giving an account of Dr. Sargent's examination. 

" The first thing," says Dr. Sargent, " that struck me when I saw 
Sandow stripped was the extraordinary size of the muscles as com- 
pared with that of the bones. His skeleton is not large, as is easily 
seen in the girth of his wrist and ankles, but the bones are exceed- 
ingly fine. The muscles are also of very fine quality. The fibres 
are unusually small, but they are much more numerous than in the 
case of the average athlete, a fact which accounts for their great 
bulk. His muscles in certain regions, notably on the upper arms and 
back, are developed to an extraordinary degree. The trapezius and 
extensors and flexors of the legs and thighs are also tremendous. 
The muscles of the pectoral are not so large relatively as the deltoid, 


biceps and triceps. This is probably due to the character of the 
feats he performs every night. 

"Another distinguishing characteristic is his voluntary control 
of his muscles. He can relax and contract them at will, and the 
fact that he is able to relax antagonizing muscles is a great aid in 
performing feats of strength. He is able to employ only such mus- 
cles as are necessary, and there is thus very little wasted energy. 

" HJ is remarkably well-balanced in temperament. This may be 
seen in the shape of the head and poise of the features. In this re- 
spect he differs from most very strong men. His body is relatively 
quite long, and his arms and legs relatively shorter. His head 
comes under what is known as the 80 per cent, class, which shows 
the possession of the great amount of nervous energy which he 
throws into his work and enables him to perform his wonderful 

" I have found it to be a rule that strong, large men are slow in 
their movements, and inclined to be dull and stupid. But when 
you come to put Sandow to the test you find that for a man of his 
power he is very quick. His time-reaction as shown by the electri- 
cal instruments was truly remarkable, and the fact that the speed 
of his arm in a forward movement was almost equal to that of Mr. 
Donovan, who is a man of acknowledged agility and with much less 
muscle than Sandow, is, I think, extraordinary. 

" A peculiarity about Sandow in taking a deep breath is that he 
fills the top of the chest first. You will find it usually the case 
that a man will naturally begin to fill his lungs at the bottom. But 
in the machine registering the normal breathing movement it was 
seen that the abdominal breathing was greater than the thoracic. 
This is as it should be, though I find it rarely among athletes at 
Harvard. His breathing is also remarkably synchronous. 

"Altogether Sandow is the most wonderful specimen of man I 
have ever seen. He is strong, active and graceful, combining the 
characteristics of Apollo, Hercules, and the ideal athlete. There 
is not the slightest evidence of sham about him. On the contrary, 
he is just what he pretends to be. His behaviour under the tests was 
admirable. I might add that he combines with his other qualities 


those of a perfect gentleman. He has a considerable knowledge of 
anatomy, and can call the muscles by their proper names. I shall 
be glad to have him come and lecture before the students of Har- 
vard. It will be a treat for them to see a man of his physical de- 
velopment, and will doubtless act as a stimulus. It is a curious fact 
that a' very strong man always has a host of imitators." 


Herewith is appended the New York World's report of the 
incidents occurring at the examination conducted by Dr. 
Sargent : 

"By special arrangement with the Sunday World, Dr. Sargent, 
the medical examiner and physical adviser at Harvard University, 
came to New York last week and made a thorough anatomical test of 
Sandow, the strongest man in the world. The test was entirely 
satisfactory. After it was over, Dr. Sargent said that Sandow was 
everything he said he was, and that he had never before, in all his 
long experience with Harvard athletes, seen such a wonderfully de- 
veloped specimen of manhood. The examination was made in a large 
room in a hotel on Broadway, near Sandow's boarding-house. The 
room was supplied before Sandow's arrival with a very interesting 
set of apparatus, designed to test almost every possible exercise of tha 
muscles. There were instruments to blow in, to determine your force 
of expiration ; a machine to find out how many pounds you can lift, 
another to see how hard you can squeeze, another to register the 
power of the muscles of the chest, another to measure the exact 
amount of air you can take into your lungs. There was also an 
electrical apparatus which was so contrived that it recorded on a 
cylinder, covered with a thin coating of lampblack, etchings show- 
ing how regularly you breathe, and the relative proportion of breath- 
ing done by the abdomen to that done by the chest. There were 
also a set of scales ; while Dr. Sargent's secretary, who was present, 
took down the measurements. 

" When Sandow entered the room he had on a suit of steel-gray 


clothes, with a cut-away coat. Clothing, as a rule, effectually conceals 
a man's physical development, which is in most cases a fortunate 
circumstance from an artistic point of view. But it is easy to see 
that Sandow, even when dressed, possesses marvellous muscular 
power. His coat bulges out about the chest and back, in curious 
contrast to the waist, which is as small as a woman's. 

" After removing as much clothing as possible, he stood before Dr. 
Sargent, a fine example of what nature intended man to be. The 
muscles of his back, arms, legs, and sides stood out in great welts. 
His finely-moulded head, more like those on ancient statues than you 
will find in many a day's search, his small waist, and his slender 
ankles, were in artistic contrast to his wealth of muscle. At this 
early stage in the proceedings, Dr. Sargent began to be surprised. 
He was much more surprised later on. 

" Sandow was first asked to step on the scales and be weighed. 
The beam tipped at 180 pounds. This is slightly less than his usual 
weight, and he attributes the falling off to the recent hot spell. It 
is interesting to know that this is the exact weight that Dr. Sargent 
assigns to the typical athlete, a statue of which, constructed on 
purely scientific measurements, he has sent to the World's Fair. 
Sandow's height was then found to be 5 feet 8 inches. The other 
measurements that coincided with Dr. Sargent's ideal were those of 
the length of the foot and the girth of the ankles. In all other dimen- 
sions, especially those of the muscles on the arms and back, Sandow 
was considerably larger than the model. 

" Among the instruments that Dr. Sargent had provided was an 
apparatus with two handles fixed to either end of a short steel bar. 
To this bar was attached a semi-circular plane, with an indicator 
that moved along a scale, showing the number of kilometers of force 
exerted when the handles were pressed together. One ambitious 
person present, after pushing on these handles until he was very 
red in the face, made the indicator go half-way round. Another 
gentleman, who is a good deal stronger than one might suppose, 
made it move around a little further. Sandow then took hold and 
pressed. The indicator went round until it had passed the last 
registering mark, and was stopped by a little steel knob. If tha f . 


hadn't been there the indicator might have described a complete 
circle. This was one of the features of the examination that espe- 
cially surprised Dr. Sargent. 

" There was another apparatus with an indicator to show how 
many pounds you can lift. Sandow attacked this until the indicator 
registered 440 kilos. This is about 1,000 pounds, but Sandow ex- 
pressed himself as very much disappointed with the result. There 
was nothing to show for the tremendous amount of muscular power 
exerted beyond the gradual moving of a little steel arrow along a 
graduated scale. 

" ' If you want feats of strength,' he said, ' I will show you some- 

" He then asked for the heaviest man in the room. This proved to 
be Dr. Sargent himself. He had been weighed earlier in the morn- 
ing and had tipped the scales at 175 pounds. After expressing his 
regret that there was no one heavier at hand, Sandow required the 
doctor to stand with his back towards a table placed in the centre of 
the room. Sandow knelt down and laid his right hand flat on the 
floor, with the palm turned up, and asked the doctor to stand on it 
with one foot. Then, taking a firm hold, he raised the eminent phy- 
sician rapidly but easily to the top of the table, whence he removed 
him as gently as a mother would her child. The most remarkable 
thing about this performance was that the lifting was done with a 
straight arm. There was not the slightest bending at the elbow. 
This was another instance at which the doctor was considerably sur- 
prised. It was certainly a wonderful feat, and far more impressive 
as an object lesson than pulling at the machines, though of course 
that was valuable as a scientific test. 

"There was still another machine, which was designed to be 
placed between the knees and which registered the power of com- 
pression of the legs. Sandow was also disappointed with this. He 
did not take much satisfaction in moving the indicator, no matter 
how much it registered. So he asked the doctor to sit in a chair 
opposite him with his knees tight together. Sandow then sat down 
with his knees pressing against those of the doctor, and told the 
latter to force his legs apart. Dr. Sargent tugged and strained, but 


his legs remained locked as in a vise. The situation was reversed, 
and Sandow pushed the doctor's legs apart as easily as though they 
had been wisps of hay. As an illustration of his leg power, Sandow 
said that once an experiment was made in which a horse was 
hitched to each knee and then started ahead with the purpose of 
pulling his legs apart. The horses were unable to budge an inch. 
Sandow then separated his legs and the horses were again started. 
The knees came together and the horses were pulled back. This 
would be a difficult story to believe in the case of anybody but San- 
dow. In the old days, when it was the fashion in England to draw 
and quarter people for imaginary offences, it is likely that Sandow 
would have escaped unhurt if he had been subjected to this mode of 


" Sandow afforded another illustration of his wonderful strength, 
this time selecting the muscles of his abdomen as the means of still 
further surprising Dr. Sargent. Most persons are not aware 
that they have muscles on their abdomen, and, in fact, they might 
as well be without them, for they seldom put them to the use in- 
tended by nature, that of protecting the intestines and stomach. 
On Sandow th6se muscles are revealed in numerous rolls, which 
when contracted are very hard, and when you rub your hand up 
and down them feel like a corrugated iron roof. Dr. Sargent was 
again called into requisition. Sandow lay down on the floor and 
asked the doctor to stand on his abdomen. After the doctor had 
assumed this pedestal, Sandow remained for a moment with the 
muscles relaxed. Then he suddenly contracted them, and the doc- 
tor went shooting up into the air. He said afterwards that that was 
the first time he had ever jumped from a human spring-board. 

" It is usually true of very strong men that they are more or less 
phlegmatic in their movements. This is accounted for by the fact 
that one set of muscles often impedes the action of the others. The 
biceps and triceps, for example, are what are called antagonistic 
muscles. That is, when one contracts it has to overcome the natu- 


ral tendency of the other to work in the opposite direction. For 
this reason big, strong men are often slow in getting about. San- 
do w, however, is peculiarly constituted. He has the faculty of 
using only those muscles that are required for a particular motion. 
When rejaxed his arm is as soft as a child's, but when contracted it 
feels like steel. Dr. Sargent said he had never before seen such re- 
markable control of the muscles as Sandow has of his. On occasion 
Sandow can put into prominence any one of the muscles of the body. 
By a twist of the wrist he can make a muscle appear on the fore- 
arm which the ordinary man does not know he possesses. By twist- 
ing his head a little, he can make another on the back protrude. 
He is thoroughly familiar with his own anatomy, and knows all of 
his parts by their scientific names. 

" In still another respect he differs greatly from the average strong- 
man. Dr. Sargent has an apparatus, consisting of a long wooden 
rule, to which is attached a wire, running parallel with the edge. 
This wire is divided in the middle, and on either side is a small but- 
ton, which may be moved along a scale. The object of this device 
is to see how near you may come to guessing exact distances. On 
one side of the wire the button is placed half- way between the end 
and the middle of the rule, and you are asked to arrange the other 
button a like distance from its end. Sandow did this with wonder- 
ful accuracy. In all his attempts he seldom failed t6 place the but- 
ton at the right point. This shows that he possesses in a remark- 
able degree what Dr. Sargent calls the power of perception. In 
other words, his organism is not merely strong but is fine as well. 


" A series of very interesting tests was made with the electrical 
machine already mentioned, which registered the quantity and quality 
of breathing. Two fine needles were made to trace markings on a 
piece of blackened paper. One of these needles was so arranged 
that it indicated the breathing done by the abdomen, and the other 
that done by the chest. The average athlete breathes very little 
with his abdomen, but the ideal athlete uses it almost altogether. 


When the apparatus was attached to Sandow, the needles began 
a slow up-and-down movement. When he drew in his breath the 
needles moved up, and when he expelled the air taken into his lungs 
the needles moved down. Dr. Sargent handed Sandow a paper to 
read, and asked him to distract his attention as far as possible from 
his surroundings. Then the spectators gathered about the machine. 
The upper needle, which accounted for the movements of the chest, 
rose and fell with a regular movement, making a mark about half 
an inch long. Meanwhile, the other needle moved as slowly and as 
regularly, but made marks three times as long. If you observe a 
dog carefully, you will see that his breathing is apparently done in 
the abdomen. Sandow breathes very much like a dog, and there- 
fore in the way intended by nature. A woman breathes, ordinarily, 
chiefly with her chest, owing to the constriction of her clothing. 
Dr. Sargent says this is injurious, and advises loose waists. The 
pieces of paper on which Sandow's breathing was registered were 
afterwards treated with shellac, and will be preserved as an exam- 
ple for students at Harvard. 


" Among the spectators present, was Mr. Michael Donovan, the in- 
structor of boxing at the New York Athletic Club. Mr. Donovan 
enjoys the deserved reputation of being one of the most skilful and 
agile boxers in the country. He can strike a blow with surprising 
quickness. Therefore, in any test for determining the speed of a 
forward movement of the arm, he must be a good man who can hold 
his own with Mr. Donovan. There are very few such. Yet San- 
dow, with a vastly greater muscular force to overcome, can shoot 
out his arm almost as rapidly. This fact was determined by means 
of another electrical apparatus, so arranged that the time taken by 
the fist in passing through a given distance is accurately measured. 
It was shown that in sixteen trials the average time occupied by 
Sandow's fist in passing through a distance of 15 75-100 inches was 
11-100 of a second. Donovan's speed in ten trials averaged 8-100 of 


a second. This is a very small difference. But in a variation of the 
same test Sandovv had the better of Mr. Donovan. A small flag 
was made to drop by pressing an electric button. A device, was 
arranged to discover the exact interval between the dropping of the 
flag and- the moment when the person undergoing the experiment 
made up his mind to perform a certain action. The test was pre- 
cisely the same as in the case of a sprinter, who waits for the falling 
of a flag or the firing of a pistol to get under way. Out of sixteen 
trials, it took an average of 22-100 of a second for Sandow to make 
up his mind. Mr. Donovan's time, under the same circumstances, 
the average being taken from ten trials, was 23-100 of a second, just 
1-100 of a second slower. Sandow's maximum was 26-100, and his 
minimum 18-100 of a second. Mr. Donovan's maximum was 26-100 
and his minimum 15-100. The same experiments were tried with 
the ringing of an electric bell substituted for the falling of the flag. 
The results were about the same as in the previous trials. 

" When the doctor had finished his tests, Sandow gave a short ex- 
hibition for the benefit of the spectators. First, he expelled all the 
air from his lungs, reducing his chest to its smallest possible girth. 
Then, after taking a few deep breaths, he filled his lungs to their ut- 
most capacity. The difference in the measurements was fourteen 
inches. The ordinary big-chested man is proud when he can exhibit 
an expansion of six inches." 




" SANDOW, as a muscular phenomenon is of comparatively 
limited interest to the public, save as an exciting, and doubt- 
less engaging, curiosity ; but Sandow, as the culmination of a 
system which will enable even the weakest to attain a perfect 
physical development, is an object of stupendous interest to 
everybody." The above forceful dictum is the shrewd and 
frankly -phrased judgment of the publishers of this work, ex- 
pressed in a letter of instructions to the editor on his under- 
taking his congenial task. The writer takes the liberty to 
preface this section of the book with the intelligent observa- 
tion, as it is helpful in indicating the scope and design of what, 


if we do not fail in our purpose, ought to be the most impor- 
tant and serviceable division of the work. In a matter of 
such paramount moment, the difficulty is not so much to 
recognize the importance of the real issue, as to lay the finger 
precisely upon those forces, physical and temperamental, 
which, in Mr. Sandow's case, have been at work in the evolu- 
tion and equipment of the athlete, and have made him the 
structurally perfect type of man he has become. The inquiry 
is somewhat simplified by our having to leave out hereditary 
gifts, of any abnormal kind, among the accounting factors 
for Mr. Sandow's rare physical attainments and phenomenal 
strength. A careful inquiry has elicited the fact that Mr. 
Sandow, as we have elsewhere stated, was no youthful prod- 
igy physical or mental and inherited from his parents 
little beyond a well-made but normal frame, and a healthy 
but by no means vigorous infantile constitution. What he 
has become, therefore, is the result of his own earnest, persist- 
ent and assiduous training, coupled with a temperamental 
predisposition to all manner of health- giving exercises, with 
an aesthetic eye for beauty and grace of physical form. To an 
innate love of the beautiful and the strong, the influence of 
education has to be added, in the direction it gave to young 
Sandow's classical studies, and the ability to appreciate, as 
was exemplified in his youthful visit to Rome, the manly pro- 
portions and rare physical beauty of Old World types of man- 
hood, preserved to us in the painter's canvas or in the chiselled 
forms of the sculptor's art. The prominence given in his Ger- 
man Fatherland to wrestling and gymnastic sports had also, 
no doubt, its influence upon the budding athlete, to which, in 
time, must be added the fostering force and moulding power 
of habit. 

If we seek further for the predisposing causes which led 
Sandow to attain his high degree of physical perfection, we may 
find an ingredient, of no mean value, in his great natural 


capacity for work, especially as a youth, and, in the man. a 
determination and will-power of undeviating and inflexible 
purpose. All those things, severally, had their proportionate 
influence ; but nothing told with so much and gratifying 
effect as ceaseless and hard training, happily directed on an 
intelligent physiological basis, ever stimulated by a lively 
ambition and an unflagging enthusiasm. Our inquiry, how- 
ever, will be most satisfactorily met by reference to the re- 
nowned athlete himself, aided by such responses as Mr. San- 
do w has made in interviews with inquiring journalists and 
reporters in pursuit of their daily or nightly tale of " copy." 
One of these interviews Mr. Sandow has handed to us, and, in 
spite of its occasional inconsequential and interrogative form, 
we take leave to incorporate it in these pages. The interview 
is as reported for the London edition of the New York Herald, 
for Oct. 5, 1890, from which we copy it. 


" To see such a man as Sandow is to look on an almost ideal form of 
muscular development. Statistics of the strength of muscular tissue 
make it not impossible to believe many extraordinary stories with 
regard to the feats of strongmen who have lifted 300 Ibs. with their 
teeth and 1,200 Ibs. with their hands; but Sandow's one-handed 
jugglery with dumb-bells weighing over 300 Ibs., a ' Roman Wind- 
lill ' game, in which nearly double that power is exercised, and a 
proof of his endurance under the fell weight of 2,600 Ibs., are per- 
formances which knock out all previous records in the same line. 

"A natural adaptability for work which will develop the bulk 
and vigour of the muscles in men who, thanks, mayhap, to heredi- 
tary causes, are naturally framed for such exercises, forms but small 
part of the conditions necessary to success. The important question 
of training is here of paramount consideration, just as in all other 
athletic pursuits. The old authority who laid it down that an 
ithlete, to be of any use, should have a comely head, brawny arms 
legs, a good wind, and considerable strength, would have more 


than these requisites in Sandow, who is about middle height 5 ft. 
8 in. but full-breasted and broad-shouldered beyond all ordinary 
men, and with thighs and lower limbs of wonderful balance and 
power. Withal, the young German carries himself gracefully, and 
might rival in statuesque beauty the Farnese Hercules. 


"It should be of interest to know how such perfect muscular 
manhood was reached. Had such a man been a very wonderful 
baby, of great prowess as a boy, or how did it all come about ? Has 
it been due to some super-excellent system of training ? 

" Sandow, with a smile, remarked to a New York Herald represent- 
ative that he believed as an infant his physique was somewhat above 
the average, but as this rested on maternal authority only which is 
ever the same whatever the baby it may be taken lightly by the 
sceptical. In boyish exercises, however, he in time proved himself 
master of the town. But, granting every natural endowment which 
might fit mortal for athletic honours, Sandow, now in the flush and 
prime of manhood, thinks that his present bodily status is due more to 
training than to natural physical gifts. Not that any amount of muscle 
culture could possibly bring one person in a thousand to the same 
pitch of excellence, but that in any particular case the regimen is as 
necessary as the primal physique on which it is exercised. 

" Curiously enough, Sandow is a firm believer in the rational free- 
and-easy style of living and training which most enlightened modern 
professors use in preference to the violent methods of older days. 
Regarding as inimical to health any violent changes in one's habits 
at any period, Sandow advocates nothing beyond mere temperance 
in the gratification of every natural desire, the strictest discipline 
being, in his esteem, not inconsistent with the enjoyment of all the 
rational pleasures of life. Everywhere the theory of constant light 
exercise has succeeded the older and heavier methods, and no one 
more eloquently than our accomplished visitor speaks of the utility 
of light weights in clubs and dumb-bells, and easy, graceful exercise 
of all sorts for ordinary practice. All, too, should be done on the 
ground, as he rigidly insists, and, if possible, under proper super- 


vision of skilled instructors. Sandow himself underwent two years' 
training at Brussels under a distinguished physician, who had the 
enthusiasm of an athletic preceptor, tempered by the milder knowl- 
edge of the scientific anatomist. 


" To develop the individual muscles Sandow hit on a system for 
himself by which every set of fibres in the body receives its due 
care. For the development of the muscles of the arras, legs, chest 
and back there are varied exercises, each adopted with a view to 
getting the maximum of healthy life, and by no forcing means, out 
of each particular set. This system also worked well in half-a-dozen 
cases with other men on whom the young athlete subsequently tried 
it. Innumerable easy and graceful motions, careful avoidance of 
over- exertion, which interferes seriously with the proper produc- 
tion of energetic growth, and deals grave blows at the health of 
some of the chief organs of the body ; not eating much at a time 
but regularly, little and often ; and a few other simple principles 
seem the stock-in-trade of the system. But about its practice, no 
doubt there would be found some more difficulty than in learning 
to waltz. In repeated interviews with Sandow, by some of the chief 
lights in the Oxford gymnastic theatres, these theories were ac- 
cepted as admirable. 

"'Did you ever engage in a running or wrestling match?' I 

" ' Never in any running competition, but I like wrestling better 
than any other physical pastime. Not a muscle of the body, but it 
catches hold of and improves : calves, thighs, arms, and back every 
little bit of human band and strap are used. Not only that, but it 
also does one's wit good. Patience, nerve, endurance, agility, quick- 
ness, and coolness are all involved. 


" ' My notion about the ancients and, remember, their wrestling 
is just as we have it in all results is that they were not a bit better 


men than there are now living, but that occasionally they found a 
man incomparably better than his fellows. The classical statues are 
all idealized the complete dream of the artist who found in indi- 
viduals some perfect parts, and shaped a form in which no ingenuity 
could pick a flaw. Of course, a Hercules or Venus may not have 
been, is 'not, impossible: in beauty or strength nothing is impossible, 
but we don't see such men or women everywhere.' 

" ' You said, Mr. Sandow, that you didn't believe in the rough 
school of training which fed men on raw meat, etc. ? ' 

" * No ; a man should be denied nothing which he desires within 
certain limits. I never refuse myself anything I take wine, beer, 
smoke, and take a turn all round as other men who make the most 
of life.' 

" ' Do you know anything about boxing ? ' 

" < Very little ; but I practice with friends, though I think profes- 
sional fighting brutal sport. 


" Of all English games, let me say, I like football best. It is 
magnificent, not only as a muscular exercise, but it involves at 
every turn mental strength, coolness, quickness, and judgment. 
I saw a football match in Lancashire once which beat any other 
athletic display I ever saw the men were so bold, swift, skilful, 
cool.' " 


A little more than a year subsequent to this recorded inter- 
view, Mr. Sandow was catechised by another reporter, at the 
athlete's pleasant home in Pimlico, and as we find in the re- 
port of it (vide "Answers," Dec. 20, 1891), not a little of in- 
terest, respecting Mr. Sandow's personal history and mode of 
life, we make the following further extract : 

"The strongman is a young German who speaks English fairly 
well, good-looking, with light, curly hair, and a fair moustache. He 


is singularly modest in manner, and our representative could hardly 
believe that the young Prussian who entered the room (he is not yet 
twenty-four) was the splendid athlete who defeated Samson at The 
Aquarium some months ago. In Mr. Sandow's dining-room is a 
very fine portrait, by Mr. Aubrey Hunt, of the athlete attired as a 
Roman gladiator, standing in the Colosseum at Rome. The work is 
an admirable likeness, and shows off the enormous muscles of Mr. 
Sandow's body to great advantage. 500 has been offered for the 
painting, but, naturally enough, its owner refuses to part with it. 

" ' Now, Mr. Sandow,' began the interviewer, ' how is it you have 
become so strong as you are ? Was it by any system of training, or 
is it a natural gift ? ' 

" ' As a child I was not very strong. As a boy at school I became 
more powerful and muscular than most of my fellow-students. Be- 
yond the ordinary exercise which every German youth goes through, 
however, there was little training in my case, in the ordinary sense 
of the term.' 

" ' What about diet ? I have heard that athletes are obliged to 
obey very severe dietary rules, that they mustn't eat this and they 
mustn't drink that, until their lives become a positive burden.' 

" ' Ah ! that is not my case,' said Mr. Sandow, laughing ; ' I just 
eat and drink what I want, when I want, and in what quantities I 
want. Good, wholesome, plain food I find to be best.' 

" It was not necessary to ask the young German whether he smoked, 
for at that moment he was puffing away vigorously at a huge cigar, 
as if he enjoyed it very much. 

" ' I usually dine,' he went on, ' about 6:30 p. M., as a rest for thor- 
ough digestion is necessary before going through my performance, 
which, although it occupies only about twenty minutes, is very 
arduous while it lasts.' 

" ' What is the greatest weight you raise with one hand ? ' 

" ' Over 300 Ibs. I lift it from the ground to the head, then to the 
full length of my arm. It is a much more difficult thing to lift a 
weight than to support it. Once raised to the head I could sustain 
almost any burden.' 

" Of course you are proficient in most branches of athletics ? ' 


" ' Yes, I am a bit of an acrobat in my way. Only as an amateur, 
however, for I have never appeared professionally in that capacity.' 

" ' When did you begin to take up your present profession ? ' 

"'Only in the spring of the year after my contest with Samson at 
The Aquarium. Prior to that I had appeared only as an amateur in 
Germany, and hi a few other countries on the continent.' 

" ' Now, Mr. Sandow, how tall are you ? ' our man asked. 

"'I am just 5 feet 8 inches in height,' was the reply. 

"'And how much round the chest?' 

" ' Forty-eight inches.' 

" Forty-eight inches ! And the ordinary six-foot guardsman 
averages only about forty-one inches. This was an astonishment. 

" ' What does your arm measure round the biceps ? ' 

" ' Nineteen inches.' 

" The Ansicers man here grasped the athlete's arm. It resembled 
iron rather than human flesh, and it is just the same all over his 
body. Nothing but solid adamantine muscle is to be felt, and not 
one ounce of superfluous flesh is apparent. 

" ' You don't go in for chain-breaking and wire-rope-snapping 
feats, do you ? ' 

" ' No, I don't care much for them. They are more or less knacks, 
sometimes mere conjuring feats, indeed, but are, nevertheless, 

" Our representative afterwards had an opportunity of seeing the 
German athlete go through his performance at the London Pavilion, in 
company with his pupil, Loris. And, certainly, the feats are wonder- 
ful. Nor is there much doubt about their genuineness. The iron 
weights and dumb-bells are, at the termination of each act, allowed 
to fall with a very real and solid sound upon the stage, and, moreover, 
any one among the audience is at perfect liberty to touch and if he 
can lift them. The heaviest weight scales 312 Ibs., and this San- 
dow lifts with apparent ease to his head and holds it there. He can 
even turn a somersault whilst holding in his hands two 56 Ib. 
weights. He terminates his exhibition by supporting upon his chest, 
propped by his arms and his legs from below the knees, no less than 
2,600 Ibs., or over a ton of stone, iron, and human bodies. 


" The remark was now made that the athlete would make a splendid 
wrestler, when the Teuton replied : 

" ' In my own country I was a champion, and no one was ever able 
successfully to contend with me.' 

" ' What style did you contend in ? ' 

" ' The Grseco-Roman. That is the only species of wrestling taught 
in the German Turn Vereins. We know nothing of leg- work, which 
is the dividing line between the style of the ancients and the Lan- 
cashire fashion.' 

" ' When and how did you first take to gymnastics ? ' 

" ' Well, when I was a young man I was a mere stripling, and 
thought to strengthen my frame by a little light exercise, like the 
working of a wooden wand or a light iron bar.' 

" ' Did that do you any good ? ' 

" ' Yes ; it loosened all my muscles and made them pliant, but no 
great amount of development came from the exercises. This set me 
thinking, and I gradually found out what exercises were the best to 
develop certain kinds of muscles. Using my knowledge with the 
weights I had at my command, I began to gradually increase my 
weights and found out that I could easily put up a 100 Ib. dumb- 

" ' How long did it take you to fully develop your strength ? ' 

" ' That is a hard question to decide. I do not think that I have 
fully developed my strength yet ; but it took me two years' hard 
study to find out just where the power came from. Of course, I am 
finding out new things all the time, and it is quite possible that I 
may discover some new muscle, which will enable me still further to 
increase my lifting power.' " 

A representative of the same journal (vide "Answers," for 
May 30th, 1893), in a subsequent interview with "the king 
of strong men," as he has been called, elicited some further 
information from him respecting training, and specially 
touching the use of dumb-bells, which we epitomise as follows : 
Sandow was asked if he approved of the customary drill with 
the dumb-bells taught in gymnasiums. His answer was an 


emphatic " No ; " " half the motions," he added, "don't affect 
the muscles a bit, and there are dozens of muscles which are 
not brought into action at all, and practically lie dormant and 
untrained. Nor have I much faith in gymnastics as they are 
usually- taught. They don't bring out the muscles one uses 
in everyday life. Parallel bars and much of the apparatus of 
training, I have found of little use. My faith is pinned to 
dumb-bells, and I do all my training with their aid, supple- 
mented by weight-lifting. By the constant use of dumb- 
bells any man of average strength can bring his muscles to 
the highest possible development ; but he should, of course, 
know my system, which has been adopted after much careful 
and scientific study, and has had the approval of the military 
authorities of Britain, and in the training schools for the 
army has been put to the most satisfactory tests. If I had a 
boy," continued Mr. Sandow, "I should start him with 
i-lb. dumb-bells when he was two years old, and then gradu- 
ally increase the weight with his years. My idea is that boys 
of from ten to twelve should have 3-lb. dumb-bells ; from 
twelve to fifteen, 4-lb. , and from fifteen upwards, I consider 
5-lb. dumb-bells quite sufficient for any one. But there is little 
use, and only a waste of time, in exercising with dumb-bells 
by fits and starts ; they should be used persistently and 
systematically. It should be compulsory in all schools for 
boys to have regular training with dumb-bells, and if this 
were universal there would soon be a most beneficial change 
in the physique of the rising generation." 

The importance to be attached to this evidence of the great 
athlete, favouring the use of dumb-bells, on his own or any 
good and intelligent system of exercising with them, can 
hardly, we venture to think, be open to question. The verdict 
of a professional, like Mr. Sandow, who has almost solely 
used them, in attaining the muscular power which enables 
him to bear the strain of his nightly performances, cannot 


hastily, at least, be set aside. Nor is there, in his case, mere 
strength and vigour of muscle, by which he elevates by one 
hand over his head, a bar-bell, in the bosses of which lurk two 
men ; supports with ease on his chest a mounted life-guards- 
man, a grand piano with an orchestra of four men, or the see- 
saw performances of three good-sized cobs ; there is also that 
flexibility of frame and suppleness of muscle which enables 
him, with agility, to turn back-somersaults, with a 56-lb. 
dumb-bell in each hand, and to carry himself and perform all 
his movements with litheness and grace. 



THE remark has been made by my friend, Colonel Fox, of 
Aldershot, (see chap. XII. ) that I, in my own person, best ex- 
emplify the practical results of my system of physical training. 
Colonel Fox is right, though that gallant officer, at one time, 
as many others have since, found it hard to believe that my 
strength has been attained and my muscular system built up 
by methods of physical training so simple and unambitious 
as those which I have alone used, and which I commend so 
earnestly to those who are in search of both health and strength. 
The disposition is a prevalent one to connect great results with 


elaborate methods in their achievement, forgetting that 
Nature does not work so, and unmindful of the fact that the 
race is not always to the swift nor the battle to the strong. In 
my own training, I have never made use of elaborate methods, 
nor, indeed, of any but the simplest ; but the latter I have 
used, as I think, intelligently, and with determination and 
persistence. It was always an axiom with me to put my mind 
into my work. Never was there a time when I dawdled over 
the exercises which experience taught me were helpful in 
building up my bodily frame and giving me strength and 
endurance. Nor can I charge myself, at any period of my 
career, with perfunctorily using the opportunities, whether 
of time or material, open to me, since I seriously determined 
to become active and strong. In this, as in everything else, 
lies much, as we all know, of the secret of success ; for without 
steady application to the work in hand, whether it be to 
achieve a task or to make oneself strong, the best results are 
never attainable, if, indeed, we are not likely to make a more 
or less perilous approach to failure. 


Besides concentrating my mind on my work, I have assid- 
uously thought out for myself the best, and, as I have said, 
the simplest and most effective, modes of training. I have 
never fancied, nor found need for, the elaborate equipment of 
the modern gymnasium. Nor have I ever exercised except on 
the ground, eschewing such appurtenances as the trapezium, 
the rings, the plank, the ladder, the mast, the vertical pole, 
and other paraphernalia of gymnastic training. For showy 
or acrobatic work, these elaborate devices may be useful ; but 
I have not found them helpful as aids to an all-round, vigorous, 
and healthful bodily development, while practice on them is 
attended by much and sometimes serious injury and risk. 


The dumb-bell and the bar-bell have been my chief means of 
physical training, aided by a tolerably thorough knowledge 
of physiology and anatomy, and especially of the ramifications 
and uses of the muscles. A prof essional study of the latter, 
which I 'was fortunate enough to make at the Medical College 
at Brussels, has been of very great value to me. It taught 
me not only the points of localization and functions of the 
muscles, and their manifold connecting ligatures and tissues, 
but emphasized, as no desultory or unscientific study could, 
the physiological effects on the human frame of active and 
intelligent exercise. 

Previous to taking the medical course at Brussels, I had 
only a layman's shallow acquaintance with the structure and 
physiology of the animal frame. I had no technical knowledge 
of organic life, or of the vast field which science, aided by the 
microscope, has opened up for us in relation to the bone and cell 
structure, waste and repair, of the human body. I knew little 
even of the commonest elements of physiology of the act of 
breathing and the processes of inspiration and respiration ; of 
the composition of the blood, its circulation and feeding 
power ; of digestion and the solvent power of the gastric and 
pancreatic juices ; of the effect of food, drink, and pure- air on 
the system. Not only did I learn about these several impor- 
tant matters, which are now, happily, included in an ordinary 
school education ; but, more valuable to me than all, I ac- 
quired a knowledge of the influence of bodily exercise on the 
human organism how it affected the blood and its circulation, 
what its influence was on the organs of movement, on the 
process of secretion, on respiration, on the nervous system, 
and especially on the brain, the seat of mental life. These 
latter studies came to me as a revelation, not only as 
they furnished me with a guide to health, but as they en- 
abled me to proceed with my muscular training on an 
intelligent basis, having regard to the just harmony and 


equilibrium to be preserved in every exercise tending to 
the building up and strengthening of the human organism. 


Especially helpful were my medical studies in the direction 
which I sought most for help to enable me to cultivate a 
symmetrical and all-round development, rather than a partial 
and one-sided one. Early in my course, the physiological 
law, which lies at the bottom of all physical education, was 
impressed upon me, viz., that the structure and functions 
of the body increase with use, and that waste comes with 
disuse and idleness. I then learned to note and appreciate 
the effect of muscular exercise on the tissue-cells of the body ; 
how bone, muscles, and nerves were affected by muscular 
action, how it stimulated breathing, and what enriching 
nutriment it brought to the blood. My next and most 
important acquisition, was a knowledge of the situation and 
ramification of the muscles, distinguishing the voluntary and 
involuntary, as they act dependent upon or independent of 
the will, with their uses in the animal economy, in protecting 
and securing the nutrition of the body, and in carrying on 
the functions of blood- circulation, respiration, digestion, and 
secretion. The knowledge, I gained of the fibrous net-work 
of the muscles the active element in which force resides, and 
by means of which the bones and joints are brought into play 
and the movements of the organs are effected, was, as I 
have already observed, of incalculable importance to me. It 
enabled me to locate and bring into due development not only 
the layers of exterior muscles, the channels of the nerve-force, 
but the interior muscles also those which are not seen, yet 
have active functions to perform, in controlling the move- 
ments and aiding the blood-circulation, respiration, etc., 
dthin the body. I was not long, of course, in observing the 


distinctive fact about the muscles that exercise while it 
wastes also repairs the body, and, in an especial degree, 
increases the volume and strength of their own substance ; 
and that muscular action, by accelerating circulation and 
increasing the absorption of nutritive material, not only 
assists the regenerative processes of the human organism, but 
wards off disease and maintains the body in health. 

Nor was I slow to discern the advantage to health, physical 
and mental, in developing, as far as possible, all of the mus- 
cles ; for this is the work which hygienic gymnastics should 
be made to aim at, if it seeks to secure uniform good health, 
rather than those purely recreative pastimes, which develop 
only a special organ or two, to the neglect and disuse of the 
rest. It is well to impress this, especially on the young reader 
of these pages or the novice in physical training, for it should 
not be the mere* acquisition of strength, or even skill in the 
performance of certain feats, that should be aimed at ; but 
that degree of health and vigour of mind, which shall best 
fit the race for its various vocations, improve its morale, and 
promote its happiness. Especial care, also, should be taken 
by the young, to see that no exercises are entered upon in 
excess of the strength of the beginner, otherwise harm, and 
oftentimes serious harm, will result ; nor should they be 
entered upon in the spirit of reckless and overstrained compe- 
tition, which not infrequently shortens life or does lasting in- 
jury to those engaged in the contest. 


Exercise, I would also impress upon the young reader, 
ought to be taken in a well-ventilated place, not in a con- 
tracted bedroom or thronged hall, where the atmosphere 
is likely either to be close, and therefore poisonous, or con- 
taminated by many breaths, each throwing off at every expira- 


tion about twenty cubic inches of impure air, which occasion 
headaches, laboured breathing, and stagnation of the life- pro- 
cesses. Where exercise is taken in the bedroom, the windows 
should be open or partially open, particularly if the room be 
small and the ceiling low. During the exercise, the body 
should be lightly clad, free from any close-fitting or impeding 
garment ; and, where practicable, a cold plunge bath even 
a mere dip in and out should follow the exercise. 

Circumstances will guide those taking daily exercise as to 
the period of the day in which it is to be indulged. Best and 
cessation from work should, for a time, always succeed a 
meal. The early morning, before breakfast, is best for a 
little light exercise, or at night before retiring, followed 
by a bath. In these suggestions, gymnastic exercise for 
those occupied all day is what I have specially had in view. 
For walking, running, riding, swimming, rowing, and the 
active pastimes of the playground, tennis-court and cricket- 
field, any leisure of the day will, of course, suit, though, in no 
case, should any considerable exertion immediately follow 
a meal ; and care should be taken that if exercise has been 
carried so far as to induce perspiration, the body should, if 
possible, be rubbed dry, and standing in draughts be avoided. 


The training I, of course, specially commend is dumb-bell 
and bar-bell exercise, and, for beginners especially, of very 
light weights. (For the generality of people, my experience 
would limit the weight to four or not more than five pounds.) 
But walking, rowing, skating, swimming, and, where the 
heart is all right, climbing and running, are very good exer- 
cises ; football, if not too roughly played, being also excellent. 
Nothing, in my opinion, however, is better than the use of 
1 the dumb-bell, for developing the ivhole system, particularly 


if it is used intelligently, and with a knowledge of the loca- 
tion and functions of the muscles. With this knowledge, it 
will surprise most would-be athletes how much can be done 
with the dumb-bell, and what a range and vast complexity of 
muscles can by it be brought into play. It has been well said 
that the muscular system of a man is not made up alone of 
chest and biceps ; yet to expand the one and enlarge the other 
is almost all that is thought of by the untrained learner. It 
is also foolishly supposed that this is the limit of the work to 
be done by the dumb-bell. Far otherwise is the case, as a 
subsequent section devoted to exercises will show. The truth 
is, that there is hardly a muscle that cannot be effectively 
reached by the system of dumb-bell exercise which I use and 
have here set forth for the pupil-in-training. 

Muscle-culture, of course, should not be taken up spasmodi- 
cally, or without an object in view, or it will fail of its effect. 
Nor should the object in view be to develop the muscles merely 
for adoration or display. Regard ought always to be had to 
the hygienic benefits to be derived from the exercise. If this 
be not the purpose of the trainer, the novelty will soon pass 
and interest will become evanescent. Nor, on the other hand, 
should gymnastics be pursued violently : prudence should 
temper ardour and reason restrain recklessness. Perhaps the 
chief difficulty to be surmounted, especially with beginners 
who are not young, is to overcome the irksomeness of training 
and to maintain the interest. Most of us are the creatures of 
habit, and if physical culture has not been begun early, and 
been maintained, as it ought to be, through life, new habits, 
however good in themselves, are difficult to form and pur- 
sue with patient assiduity. In this case, the zealous in- 
structor can only fall back on the benefits, mental as well as 
physical, to be derived from exercise benefits which are more 
real than most people are aware of, and are but little under- 
stood if muscular exercise is deemed merely a recreation and 


not a necessity of our being, indispensable to the highest 
efficiency and health. 


In engaging in muscular exercise, or, indeed, in any exer- 
whatever, much that is beneficial to health is lost for 
rant of an intelligent and well-trained instructor. Even with 
rhat is supposed to be a competent instructor, systems of 
training are frequently adopted that are ineffective, and some- 
times vicious. Exercises are not taken up progressively from 
the simple to the complex. A beginner, at least, should never 
work in advance of his capacity. Sometimes, too, exercises 
are indulged in so fatuously as to overstrain the muscles, 
and, at times, put them to wrong uses. The radical mistake 
is also made of over-training, and of developing the muscles 
till they feel like iron, forgetting that flexibility rather than 
hardness is the symbol and condition of health. Exercise I 
have, moreover, seen prescribed quite unsuited to the vocation 
and habits of life of the person counselled to engage in it. 
Here, as in other things, the old adage is true, that what is 
one man's meat is another man's poison. The man who taxes 
his brain all day and leads a sedentary life needs an exercise 
quite different from that suited to the artisan or mechanic. 
Both will benefit by a change of occupation, but the brain- 
worker should have an exercise that animates and exhilarates, 
and does not fatigue, the mind. For the jaded mind, the best 
antidotes are sleep and rest. 


A further caution to be observed when engaging in muscu- 
lar exercise, is to acquire correct habits of breathing. In 
ordinary life few know how to breathe properly, as few know 


how to sit or stand erect, and maintain, in walking, the 
proper carriage of body and limbs. When correct attitudes 
are formed in the bearing of the person, no conscious effort or 
exertion is needed to maintain them. A careless deportment 
and slouching poses of the body, so commonly met with, 
are not only aesthetic defects, but do grave injury to the 
health, besides retarding, and detracting from, the stature. 
No better remedy is there for this than the proper training of 
the muscles, for they are the legitimate props of the frame, 
and upon them, and not upon the spine and other bone struc- 
tures of the system, devolve the duty of supporting the body 
and keeping it erect. If we are to breathe aright, the inflation 
of the lungs should be from below rather than from the top, 
that is, that the inspiratory act should fill the lower part of 
the lungs and diaphragm first, then be inhaled upwards with a 
lifting and expanding movement of the chest, giving the 
latter room to distend by throwing back the head and shoul- 
ders. Take full, long breaths, and not short, gasping ones, 
retaining the breath for a time in the lungs and air-passages, 
so as to distend the ribs and their connecting cartilages, then ex- 
pel the air slowly and exhaustively, assisted, if need be, by a 
pressure of the hand on the diaphragm and abdomen. This 
counsel may appear at first unnecessary, as nothing seems 
more easy than effortless or natural breathing, and yet few, 
comparatively, acquire the art of correct, or, what is termed, 
natural breathing, as singing-masters and voice-cultivators, 
especially, know to their cost. * But correct habits of breathing 

* Mr. W. H. Lawton, a well-known tenor of New York, has recently been 
lecturing on the Art of Breathing, and has very properly laid stress on the use 
of the diaphragmatic muscle as an aid to good vocalization, in speaking and 
singing, as well as a means not only of obviating the throat troubles from which 
many speakers and singers suffer, but also of developing the chest and giving 
proper poise and perfect symmetry to the body. From a report of Mr. Law- 
ton's lecture this interesting and instructive extract is given : 

' Mr. Lawton claimed that it was not enough simply to direct the student to 


are more important in relation to health than as aids merely 
to the distension and enlargement of the chest. They are of 
prime value in the duty they have to perform in the mechanism 
of respiration, by which the blood is purified and enriched. 
This is the more important for the young athlete to remember, 
since it is known that all muscular exercise quickens the action 
of the lungs and the heart, and that by the joint action of 
these organs there is an augmentation of the life-giving prop- 
exhale and inhale forcibly so many times a day. He must be shown how to 
use the diaphragmatic muscle, he must be told how to expand the ribs, and 
must learn that the inaction of the abdominal muscles is proof that the lungs 
are not used properly. When the student is not taught the proper use and 
control of the muscles necessary in singing, the ribs fail to be raised to the full 
extent ; the chest does not expand sufficiently ; less air enters the lungs, con- 
sequently less air and less voice are to be expired. Mr. Lawton recommends 
these exercises in diaphragmatic breathing not only as indispensable to good 
vocalization, but as health-giving and favourable to a correct and graceful 

" No matter how fine the natural voice may be the singer must learn how to 
breathe, and thereby how to poise and sustain the voice on the breath. Tech- 
nically, knowledge of breathing gives free and easy delivery to the production 
of the tone, enriches the colours, so to speak, of the voice, and perfects the vocal 
organ in such a manner as to leave no doubt in the minds of critical hearers as 
to the singer's artistic ability. Singing on the breath is found to be not only 
the true secret of artistic vocalization, but an important remedial agent in 
many physical ailments. A society lady in New York attributes her recovery 
from bronchitis to her lessons in singing, prescribed by a prominent physician. 

" The lecturer also referred to the abnormal development of the stomach and 
abdomen, brought about in great measure by lack of training in breathing. 
Proper respiration produces erect carriage and this prevents the accumulation 
of fat and superfluous flesh below the waist. In urging proper respiratory 
methods, especially for girls and young women, Mr. Lawton points out and 
emphasises their value as calisthenic and healthful exercises. The lungs are 
like a sponge. If the walls of the chest prevent the full inflation of the lungs 
they cannot perform their part in nature's economy. The blood is not properly 
oxygenated and the vital forces are necessarily weakened. Nature can be 
aided in this matter, the muscles of the chest strengthened,-the chest itself en- 
larged, and the thorax greatly assisted in its action, and by very simple means. 
The singer who grows red in the face and the cords of whose neck become 
painfully tense is evidently little skilled in the art of managing the voice." 


erties of the body. The more the breathing is accelerated, the 
more rapid, moreover, is the throwing off of the waste material 
in the system and its replacement by new and fresher 

With the breathing process carried on properly, with cor- 
rect habits in the pose and carriage of the body, with plenty 
of pure air and good wholesome food, much is secured that 
goes to the founding and maintaining of health. There is 
but one other chief provision needed for the acquisition and 
preservation of a healthy body, namely, exercise, and this has 
been provided in one's own organs of movement. Warmth, 
it may be said, we have omitted in this enumeration of the 
body's wants ; but warmth, though it is mainly supplied by 
the food we eat, is largely aided by exercise, for without 
muscular action not only would heat lack its life-sustaining 
and energising force, but the nutritive material, which exer- 
cise assists to absorb and distribute by means of the circula- 
tion of the blood, would be ill-adapted for its great purpose in 
the animal economy.* 

* " The employment of the muscles in exercise not only benefits their especial 
structure, but it acts on the whole system. When the muscles are put in action, the 
capillary blood-vessels with which they are supplied become more rapidly charged 
with blood, and active changes take place not only in the muscles, but in all the sur- 
rounding tissues. The heart is required to supply more blood, and accordingly 
beats more rapidly in order to meet the demand. A larger quantity of blood is 
sent through the lungs, and larger supplies of oxygen are taken in and carried to 
the various tissues. The oxygen, by combining with the carbon of the blood and 
the tissues, engenders a larger quantity of heat, which produces an action on the 
skin, in order that the superfluous warmth may be disposed of. The skin is thus 
exercised, as it were, and the sudoriparous (perspiratory) and sebaceous (fatty) 
glands are set at work. The lungs and skin are brought into operation, and the 
lungs throw off large quantities of carbonic acid, and the skin large quantities of 
water, containing in solution matters which, if retained, would produce disease in 
the body. Wherever the blood is sent, changes of a healthful character occur. The 
brain and the rest of the nervous system are invigorated, the stomach has its 
powers of digestion improved, and the liver, pancreas, and other organs perform 
their functions with more vigour. For want of exercise, the constituents of the 


The importance of the matters which have been here treated 
of will perhaps justify a little further dwelling on, before pass- 
ing to the movements to be hereafter described. What further 
has to be said will have reference chiefly to the influence of 
bodily exercise on the frame and the organs of movement ; on 
the circulation of the blood ; on respiration, secretion, and 
digestion ; and on the nervous system and the mental life. 
A later chapter will deal with the muscles, their situation and 
chief physiological functions. 

food which pass into the blood are not oxidized, and products which produce dis- 
ease are engendered. The introduction of fresh supplies of oxygen induced by 
exercise oxidizes these products, and renders them harmless. As a rule, those 
who exercise most in the open, air will live the longest. Professor Lankester. 


IT needs no emphasising to say here that it is incumbent 
on every one to conserve, and, as far as one can, increase, to 
their full development and vigour, his bodily and mental 
powers. Whatever agents will best promote this, it is admit- 
tedly a duty to make use of. One of the chief means for at- 
taining health and strength is, as has been shown, bodily ex- 
ercise. This, in the main, is within the reach of all ; for a 
trifling outlay can place at one's use, at least, a pair of light 
dumb-bells, and, in the cause in which we enlist their service, 
the expenditure of a little time and energy is surely worth 
the making. Nor is exercise of this kind unsuited to either 
young or old, for immature limbs can bear, as they will cer- 
tainly profit by, a modest amount of pleasurable but system- 
atic training ; while even old age will feel the invigorating 




effects of a little stimulating exercise, which should not, of 
course, go beyond what is appropriate to declining powers. 
In the case even of invalids, or of those who suffer from 
minor and removable ailments, there are many strengthening 
and curative movements, with or without weights, which 
would be possible for them to perform, and which would bring 
relief and perhaps a cure. Of this class, we may mention, 
among others, those who suffer from chronic headache, rheu- 
matism, indigestion, poorness or imperfect circulation of the 
blood, nervous troubles, etc., as well as those who are obese 
or who incline to obesity. For these and such like disorders, 
a mild course of dumb-bell exercise will be found efficacious, 
or at any rate salutary ; while the exercise can be taken, as if 
from the home medicine- chest, without resort to the gymna- 
sium or other dispensary. 

In truth, the more the rationale of gymnastics is studied, 
the wider and more beneficial will be the scope of their appli- 
cation as a remedial agent. This is now being admitted by 
the many who make use of the massage treatment (an agent 
kindred to gymnastics), and the movement cure. It is also 
acknowledged by those who pin their faith to dietetics, yet 
who recognise the difficulty of applying diet-remedies where 
the condition of the alimentary organs, or any structural 
weakness of the body, interferes with the absorbing and as- 
similating of certain foods. Where these defects exist, mus- 
cular exercise of a mild character, and when appropriately 
directed, will be found one of the best means of readjusting 
the system and furthering the processes of nutrition in the 
body. Nor is the prescribed remedy inapplicable in the early 
stages, at least, of consumption and even heart disease, though 
in these cases, the movements should, of course, be indulged 
in with moderation. Public speakers and singers will also 
profit, as we have shown, by exercises which strengthen and 
give tone to the vocal organs. 


In all these several ways can health be promoted, strength 
acquired, the injurious effect of certain callings in life coun- 
teracted, and a very appreciable energising influence exerted 
upon the mental faculties. To those, especially, whose voca- 
tions confine them to sedentary habits and the stooping atti- 
tude, 'and which in too many cases induce distorted frames, 
round shoulders, or shoulders of unequal height, and a one- 
sided development of the body and limbs, daily exercise at the 
dumb-bells will be found fraught with gratifying benefit. 
But the exercise should be persistent, and, while indulged in, 
vigorous, for it is unreasonable to expect the frame and its 
muscle- vesture to recover, by occasional and intermittent cor- 
rective exercise, what they are habituated to throughout a 
long day's occupation in a deforming and unnatural posture. 
This, it is hardly necessary to say, applies to women as well 
as to men ; for among the other sex are to be met with ill- 
built and ill-conditioned women, upon whom fashion, unwisely 
followed, lays its ungracious hand, as seen in the victims of 
indigestion, constricted breathing, constipation, sallow com- 
plexion, the malaise feeling, and feeble health. 


The influence of exercise on the bodily frame of women is, 
strange to say, still indifferently recognised. The prevalent 
idea is that muscular exercise of any active kind, for a young 
girl, coarsens and makes a boy of her. The idea is a delusion ; 
mischievous, indeed, when we realize the value to a growing 
girl of gymnastics, in their milder form of calisthenics ; and 
its evil results are seen not only in the ailments, among many 
others, to which we have just referred ; but also in the ab- 
sence of comeliness, grace, and that beauty and shapeliness 
of physical contour which we associate with a perfectly-formed 
and finely-conditioned woman. In women, we do not, of 


course, particularly look for strength, still less for the robust 
muscle of an Amazon. Nor ought we to look for plumpness 
only, for a sluggish brain and heavy, inert movements too 
often mark the merely well-fed but idle woman. It is grace 
of form and beauty of outline that attract us in the sex, with 
those genuine accompaniments of efficient physical training 
a lustrous eye, a clear skin, a bright intellect, a happy dispo- 
sition, and a vivacious manner. The antitheses of those 
charms in a woman shall I be pardoned for saying it ? are 
not uncommonly to be met with ; but only, it may be said, in 
one who has neglected the physical need of her nature, and 
has never known the real joy of living experienced by those 
who have cultivated the body to a due degree of physical per- 
fection. Only less uncommon are the other physical types of 
our meagre day the loutish, half-developed boy, with his 
lanky limbs and shambling gait, and the gawky girl, with her 
bony elbows and scraggy neck. Both are culpable human 
disfigurements whose muscular poverty and general state of 
ill-condition only parental folly can excuse. Equally lack- 
ing in mental and moral wholesomeness must be the boy and 
girl reared in a reprehensible neglect of physical culture. 

The period of youth, I of course remember, is the period of 
immaturity, and, at an early age, one ought not to look for 
any abnormal degree of physical development. But I have 
been speaking of the neglect, not of the paucity, or too-soon- 
looked-for results, of muscular training. One should be in no 
hurry to see lads become men and girls become women. Let 
both be young as long as they possibly can. But youth is the 
time for laying well the foundation of a sound constitution 
and the forming of good habits ; and the period should not 
pass, either for girl or for boy, without the salutary stimulus 
to body and brain of a moderate, regular, and systematic 
course of physical training. Happily, schools for girls, as 
well as those for their brothers, are now recognising and sup- 


plying this want of adolescent nature, and if the cricket- 
ground and gymnasium are not yet open to a girl the tennis 
court is, and she is encouraged to take to rowing, swimming, 
skating, riding, and mountain-climbing, while wands, rods, 
and even Indian clubs and dumb-bells, are not the tabooed 
things they were once to her sex. Were the village green, 
unluckily, not a thing now of the past, and were corsets and 
high-heeled shoes not the universal vogue of the time, I should 
regret the passing jiway of dancing on the sward. But 
fashions are mutable, and Newnhani and Girton may yet 
revive the May -pole and its innocent revels, and, at no distant 
day, it may be, give a degree to a terpsichorean First. 


But I have to do with dumb-bells and, in the main, with 
exercise for grown or growing men. The complementary 
exercise to dancing on the sward is wrestling on the green, 
and if I went into that I should have little space left me for 
the set purpose of this book. What I want to do here is to 
endeavour to bring home to every mind the priceless value of 
exercise on the individual health, and to say a further word 
or two about the influence which a well-built, healthy body 
exerts upon the brain. In declaiming on these topics, it is ex- 
traordinary to note, in these days of general enlightenment, 
with what prejudice or indifference the matter is still treated-. 
We educate or cram the mental faculties, often with the veriest 
lumber in the way of facts, but, partly in the case of one sex, 
and almost wholly in the case of the other, we leave the bodily 
powers to take care of themselves. Were the subject of 
physical training to take its legitimate place among the ed- 
ucating forces of the time, we should startle our school admin- 
istrators and probably revolutionise society. Both leisure and 
opportunity would, at least, not be wanting for the proper 


pursuit of health, of body as well as of mind. Down would 
go the prejudices, and a way would vanish the delusions which 
now hinder and impede. Indifference also would disappear, 
and we should no more hear the flimsy pretext of preoccu- 
pation or want of time to devote daily to bodily exercise. 
Of the many delusions which the devotee of physical culture 
has to meet, there is one I have myself repeatedly had to 
refute, namely, the assertion that the human body adapts 
itself as well to a life without, as it does to a life with, exer- 
cise. This can be true only in the case of the man who is 
content to go through life on the lowest plane of vitality. 
"It is true," as a writer has well observed, " that you may 
deprive your body of exercise and after a little time you will 
cease to feel that imperative need of it which a man in perfect 
health feels if he is by some chance deprived of his accustomed 
game. But this only means that your body is in a lower con- 
dition of vitality. It is perfectly easy to lower the tone of 
the constitution without being aware of it. The native of a 
slum in London is certainly less robust than a Yorkshire game- 
keeper. But he is not reminded of this fact day by day. He 
feels the same as usual, and that is all he knows about him- 
self. The questions he ought to ask himself are, what kind of 
old age is awaiting him ? Are his children healthy ? If not, 
is their sickliness to be traced to their father ? Lastly, can 
he do his daily work as efficiently and rapidly as if he were a 
healthier man .?" * 


Another, and often a more serious, obstacle one has to con- 
tend against, is the want of persistence in exercising, even 
when you have convinced your friend or pupil of the great 
benefits to be derived from it. He makes excuse for his de- 

* " Health Exhibition Literature," vol. x. p. 128 : London, 1884. 


fection on the score of fatigue, and the sense of weariness 
which the novice in physical training at first feels when he 
begins to take muscular exercise. This is a trouble which all 
beginners experience, until the unnatural stiffness or atrophy 
of the muscles has been overcome and the body yields to the 
muscular tone which continued exercise in time brings about. 
A knowledge of the action-processes of the muscles will show 
what must first take place before the tyro-in-training can find 
comfort and real pleasure in his work. The muscles, he 
must understand, work co-ordinately, that is, in a harmonious 
though antagonistic process, the flexor, the bending or dou- 
bling-up muscles, situate along the face- front of the trunk and 
limbs as far down as the knees, pulling in one direction, and 
the extensor, the straightening or opening-out muscles, behind 
the body and limbs, drawing in another. Hence, until the 
learner has advanced far enough with his exercises to enable 
the extensor muscles to respond to his will, and counteract the 
natural and acquired tendency of the flexors to contract and 
double-up the limbs, he will feel the effort, and be incommoded 
by it, to pursue his training with anything like hearty per 
sisteiice. As time goes on, however, his practising will become 
easier, and the muscles, at first so much estranged, will act 
almost automatically and in concert. With increasing exer 
cise will then come not only joy in the work, but such a control 
of the muscles as will save great expenditure of nervous force, 
superadded to those gains to health and vital power which the 
young athlete will find the best rewards of his labour. 


But it is time, in these talks of the benefits of muscular 
exercise to health, to turn a little more directly from the 
popular treatment to the technical ; though, in anything I have 
yet to say, I do not propose, of course, to trench seriously on 


ground much better covered in the text-books on physiology. 
I have already, though I fear in a rather desultory way, 
shown the influence of exercise on the frame and the organs 
of movement ; but something may still helpfully be said of 
the changes which take place in the muscles as the result of 
muscular action and its immediate and beneficial effect on the 
blood. And first it is to be noted that muscular action, aided 
by the quickened circulation and enrichment of the blood, of 
which it is a consequence, disintegrates old and constructs 
new tissue, and by certain chemical changes that take place 
causes the generation of animal heat. Put in another way, 
exercise, in conjunction with the quickened action of the 
heart, accelerates the process of dissimilation, that is, the 
destruction of the waste material in the body noxious to 
health, and increases the process of assimilation, or conversion 
of the food and oxygen into living tissue, the combined pro- 
cess, by the combustion which results, creating heat. This 
heat raises the temperature of the muscles and enables them 
to respond more quickly and easily to the behests of the will, 
acting through the nerve channels, as we see when a person 
exercising, or otherwise drawing upon his nervous force, 
warms, as we say, to his work. Secondly, work and heat, 
thus associated, have a necessary and powerful influence 
upon the whole life-processes. By quickening the circulation, 
they hasten the passage of the blood to the heart and from 
there to the lungs, where, being exposed to the oxygen inhaled 
it is purified and freshened and set anew on its life-givin 
mission. A further service which heat renders is to exci 
the perspiratory glands to do their cleansing and refuse-ria- 
ding work, aided by the stimulation which is at the same time 
imparted to their coadjutors the lungs, the liver, and the 
kidneys. The more work the skin does in the sweating pro- 
cess, in carrying off the excretions, the less the liver and the 
kidneys have to do ; but health and comfort, in this operation 


of draining off impurities, demand, as a consequence, proper 
attention to bathing and frequent ablutions. 


Thirdly, muscular exercise improves the powers of nutrition 
and stimulates and strengthens the digestive apparatus. 
That bodily exercise is a prime factor in promoting digestion 
and in maintaining the digestive organs in health, is unfor- 
tunately not so universally known as it should be. Of the fact, 
however, there is no manner of doubt. The changes effected 
before food becomes fit to be taken up in the blood and put in 
circulation for the sustenance of the body, are, it is true, 
mainly mechanical and chemical ; the former being supplied 
partly by the teeth and partly by the muscles of the alimentary 
canal, the latter (the chemical changes) by the saliva, gastric 
juice, and intestinal secretions. But though this operation is 
the result of the action of what is termed the " involuntary " 
muscles, that is, the muscles which seem to do their work 
independently of the will, the "voluntary" muscles, which are 
specially stimulated by exercise, have an important bearing 
on the process. Those movements, it may here be said, which 
specially act upon and strengthen the abdominal muscles are 
of prime value in their aid to digestion, and should not be 
neglected by the dyspeptic. By their exercise, not only 
minor but serious disorders in the digestive organs can be 
relieved and cured, while a salutary effect can also be exerted 
on the bowels and intestines, which otherwise not infrequently 
become torpid. The effect of exercise on the secretions is no 
less beneficial, for accelerated circulation, it is well known, 
hastens the gathering-up of the waste matter in the body and 
its exudation by the great organs of excretion the skin, the 
lungs, and the kidneys. Equally vital to the lungs and air- 
passages is muscular exercise, and the more so if active 


enough to enlarge the thoracic cavity, or chest, by a full and 
free play of the breathing power. 

In talking of exercise as an aid to digestion, I am con- 
strained to make a slight digression here, that I may speak 
of the beneficial effects of a plain, wholesome diet in the work 
of muscle-forming and in giving strength and endurance to 
the body. On this subject, common as it might be considered 
among the economies of domestic life, few seem to have any 
intelligent notion of the nutritive value of foods, or to be able 
to choose a diet, at once sustaining and palatable, adapted 
either to one's work or to one's purse. With the lavishness 
characteristic of the American continent, money is spent like 
water on the provision for the table, much of which is either 
unsuited to the system, or injurious to health ; much again 
is wasted on bad cooking ; while more is thrown away as ref- 
use, instead of being utilised after the manner of the thriftier, 
yet tasteful and appetising, economies of the French cuisine. 
It is a pity that there should be such ignorance, wastefulness, 
and false pride, for all these if I may be suffered to be so 
censorious as to say so are manifested, in too many cases, in 
the dieting provision and arrangements of American hotels, 
boarding-houses and households. In these remarks, I have, 
of course, no desire to air a personal fad, still less to give ex- 
pression to national prejudice. What has struck me, in the 
case of American living, is its generousness a quality which 
however good in its way, is not always wise in itself, or fairly 
dealt with by those who are permitted to minister to it. In. 
matters of the table, the popular habit appears to be, to get 
the best that money can buy, and have lots of it ; forgetting; 
that the dearer meats are often not the most nourishing, and 
that the plainer foods are the wholesomest, and, where mod- 
erately partaken of, are easiest of digestion, as well as the 
most strengthening. To the sybarite, no doubt, it is pleas- 
antest to consider the palate first, and digestion and nourish- 


ment afterwards ; but to the infastidious masses, if their 
purse does not constrain them, their common sense should, 
and common sense is not shown in sacrificing nutriment to 
flavour. Happily, an American expert in physiological mat- 
ters has recently been taking up this parable and preaching it 
with intelligent earnestness to, at least, his own people. His 
arraignment is of the four common mistakes in American 
households, viz.: "the use of needlessly expensive kinds of 
food ; the failure to select the varieties best fitted to our 
needs for nourishment ; in other words, using relatively too 
much of certain materials and too little of others ; eating 
more than is well for health or purse ; and throwing away a 
great deal of food that ought to be utilised." * What chiefly 
concerns me in this indictment is the failure to recognise and 
make use of the food best adapted to the body's wants in the 
generating of heat and energy. The authority I have quoted 
is emphatic in affirming that the masses, as a rule, understand 
little about the nutritive properties of different food materials, 
as compared with the prices they pay, and with their needs 
for nourishment. Nor is it a bourgeois taste, but a sound 
medical judgment, that leads this noted expert to illustrate 
his argument by declaring that " in buying at ordinary mar- 
ket-rates we get as much material to build up our bodies, re- 
pair their waste, and give us strength for work, in 5 cents' 
worth of flour, or beans, or codfish, as 50c. or $1 will pay for 
in tenderloin, salmon, or lobsters." He adds that there is as 
much nutritive value in a pound of wheat flour as in 7 Ibs., 
or 3| quarts, of oysters, and that, compared with a tenderloin 
at 50c., a round steak at 15c. a Ib. contains as much protein 
and energy, is just as digestible, and fully as nutritive. To 
the plutocratic gourmand, who wants to live well, whatever 

* Vide articles in The Forum for June, 1892, and Sept., 1893, by Prof. W. O. 
Atwater, on "Food-wastes in American Households." 



he cost, all this may be distasteful and the rankest heresy ; 
but the wise will probably note the fact, and, it may be, look 
with more enquiring eye into the ascertained laws of nutrition 
and the researches of medical men and physiologists interested 
in health-science and in the laudable economies, as well as the 
comfort and happiness, of the household. I pass from the 
subject, content'with this simple reference to it, and directing 
the reader, if he cares to look further into it, to the interesting 
table in the appendix, on the relative amounts of protein and 
energy derivable from the different kinds of food. For the 
privilege of incorporating this table, the publishers are indebted 
to the courtesy of the Editor of The Forum. 

From diet to dress the transition is both natural and easy. 
I have already spoken of the injurious effects on respiration 
of tight garments, and of the propriety, in taking muscular 
exercise, of divesting one's self of all restricting and imped- 
ing clothing. Much also might be said of the deforming ef- 
fects, in the case of women and young girls, of tight corsets 
and small shoes. The necessity for reform in these respects 
is great, as both are incalculable evils, which may well enlist 
the ameliorating efforts of those of the sex who earnestly de- 
nounce them. With these objectionable things discarded, or 
structurally modified, so that they will not occasion the ills 
for which they are now responsible, the health and vigour of 
women would sensibly improve, the resort to cosmetics would 
become unnecessary, and the nervous disorders and ailing 
feeling, which deprive the sex of half the joy of life, would 
vanish. Then would it be possible for women, whose vital 
force is now low, to take long walks and indulge in muscular 
training and derive benefit therefrom ; to be able, with comfort, 
to trip up and down stairs and feel exhilaration in the exer- 
cise ; and to perform all the duties of life with elasticity and 
freedom. The influence would be no less appreciable in the 
increased pliancy and grace of the human figure, while, with 


suitable exercise with light dumb-bells, the contour would 
improve, and the whole system be toned and invigorated. 
The effects upon the sterner sex of looser clothing and easy- 
fitting shoes, with the increased freedom therefrom to take 
healthful exercise, and with comfort go about their daily avo- 
cations, are not the less palpable and real. But the great 
desideratum is the systematic physical cultivation of the body, 
and the proper control, as well as exercise, of the muscles. 
The quickened action of the blood, put in motion by periodic 
exercise, will do much to dispal the humours which confining 
pursuits and a sedentary life invite, and give tone and pliancy 
to the whole organism. By the due awakening of the mus- 
cular system, increased flexibility and a higher command of 
the working machinery of the body will be gained, the joints 
will be rendered more supple, and either-handedness become 
as common as it is now rare. 


Before passing to my concluding topic, the influence of 
exercise on the nervous system and the mental life, let me say 
a word about my own diet and training. I am myself no 
believer in a special diet, still less in a rigid one, as necessary 
while training. The old nonsense on this subject, about raw 
eggs and underdone meat, seems to be passing away, and more 
rational views now prevail. I eat whatever I have a taste 
for, without stinting myself unduly ; nor do I restrict myself 
seriously in what I drink. Commonly, I abjure anything 
intoxicating, confining myself mostly to beer and light 
wines. Tea and coffee I never suffer myself to touch. All I 
impose upon my appetites is that they shall be temperately 
indulged. I endeavour to have my meals at regular hours, 
and prefer that they shall be simple and easy of digestion. I 
always take care to chew my food, proper mastication being 


a sine qua non of health. I take plenty of sleep and find this 
essential to my well-being. As I do not generally get to bed 
before midnight, or even later, I do not rise until eleven, 
when I take a cold bath all the year round, preceded by 
a little light exercise with the dumb-bells. I then have 
breakfast, and after attending to my correspondence and see- 
ing my friends, I go for a walk or a drive, whatever be the 
weather. At seven I dine, after which I rest until my even- 
ing performance, and close the day with another cold bath 
and supper. Usually, I dress lightly, though always suitably 
to the season. My nightly exhibitions, I may add, supply me, 
together with a good constitutional every day, with all the 
exercise I need. If I want more, I take it, as I sit reading or 
smoking, by nicking my muscles. 


As an aid to cerebral movements and to the strengthening 
and clarifying of the mental faculties, no better specific can 
be suggested than muscular exercise. It is also of great bene- 
fit in conserving the nervous force, for the muscular move- 
ments have a co-ordinate action on the brain, and seem to 
stimulate the powers and lessen the fatigues of intellectual 
effort. Its effect on the nervous system is specially to be 
noted in the case of those who suffer from fear or timidity, who 
stammer in their speech, are prone to make grimaces, or lack 
proper control of the muscles of the face or the body. But its 
chief importance is the tone it gives to the whole physical sys- 
tem, which enables it to bear the strain incident upon mental 
concentration, and at the same time to quicken the wit, and 
render prompt and decisive the judgment. Its moral effect 
is no less obvious, for it tends to wholesome- mindedness and 
the tonic bracing of the whole man. For brain- workers, and 
especially for youth at school and university, where physical 


education is not assigned its due place in the curriculum, the 
benefits of copious supplies of good arterial blood is of the 
deepest importance and should by all means be sought in daily 
muscular exercise. Without exercise and fresh air, proper 
oxygenation of the blood cannot take place, and the faculties 
will lack the invigoration which they ought imperatively to 
receive. To go on in neglect of this is to stint and impoverish 
the physical, and to cramp and probably debase the mental, 
man. The youth at college can have no better zest or stimulant 
in his studies than an occasional break in their monotony by 
a little muscular exercise and a restful confab with a room- 
mate or friend. The exercise, at any rate, he ought to have, 
for without it one can do one's work only under crippling and 
enfeebling conditions. 

Since the foregoing was in type, a thoughtful article on 
" Child-Study : the Basis of Exact Education," has appeared 
in The Forum, from the pen of Prof. Gr. Stanley Hall, well, 
known to readers by his voluminous writings on psychological 
and educational topics. The article, among other instructive 
matters bearing on the "natural history of students," em- 
phasises what has been said in the preceding paragraph on 
the value of muscular exercise as an aid to cerebral move- 
ment and to the strengthening and clarifying of the mental 
faculties. The writer particularly urges, in the case of pupils 
at school, at a time " when Nature gives man his capital of 
life-force," increased periods of recreation and improved 
hygienic conditions under which they shall study, for "work 
with dulled minds," he forcibly affirms, "breeds all bad 
mental habits," and, if there is no zestful recreation, no en- 
thusiasm for play as well as for work, passion and self- 
indulgence will take the place of deep and strong interests in 
intellectual and moral fields. Muscular education, Dr. Hall 
insists, ought largely to precede mental training, ' ' especially 
since thought is coming to be regarded as repressed muscle- 



action," and since the dry, unrelieved toil and constant tension 
of school-hours are making great draughts on the nervous 
system of children, lowering the vital energy, and with it the 
morale and tone of school-life, besides befogging and weaken- 
ing the brain and inducing all kinds of ailments and disease. 
The writer admits, of course, that very many children during 
the school- age would be sickly anyway, and that there are 
many other causes of sickness besides the school. 

" But, on the other hand," he goes on to say, " as shown by many 
tests, school-house air and bacteria, even in floor-cracks and in the 
children's finger-nails the defective light in some parts of most 
school-rooms, unphysiological seats, the monotonous strain upon 
fingers in writing and upon the eye, the necessity of sitting still as 
the basis of school- work, when activity is the very essence of child- 
hood, the worry of examinations, memory-cram, and bad methods, 
are, one and all, more or less morbific. 

" The modern school is now the most widely extended institution 
the world has ever seen, and it was never so fast extending as at 
present. North Africa, New Zealand, Egypt, Finland, and many 
till lately barbarous lands, under the present colonial policies, have 
developed elaborate school-systems. The juvenile world now goes 
to school and has its brain titillated and tattooed, and we have en- 
tirely forgotten that men have been not only good citizens but great, 
who were in idyllic ignorance of even the belauded invention of 
Cadmus. Now, if this tremendous school-engine, in which every- 
body believes with a catholic consensus of belief perhaps never 
before attained, is in the least degree tending to deteriorate mankind 
physically, it is bad. Knowledge bought at the expense of health, 
which is wholeness or holiness itself in its higher aspect, is not 
worth what it costs. Health conditions all the highest joys of life, 
means full maturity, national prosperity. May we not reverently 
ask, What shall it profit a child if he gain the whole world of knowl- 
edge and lose his health, or what shall he give in exchange for his 
health ? 


" That this is coming to be felt is seen in the rapidly growing 
systems of school-excursions, school-baths, school-gardens, school- 
lunches, provisions for gymnastics in the various schools, medical 
inspection, school polyclinics, all of which have lately been repeat- 
edly prescribed and officially normalized. Not all, but many of these 
are quite new. Here, too, must be placed the interesting tendency 
to introduce old English sports and even Greek games ; the careful 
psychological study of toys, and the several toy-expositions lately 
held in Europe ; the new hygienic laws concerning school-grounds 
and buildings, and occasionally books ; the rapid growth of vertical 
script because it requires an erect attitude ; new methods of manual 
and physical training which recognise the difference between the 
fundamental, finer, later and more peripheral accessory movements. 
To select from all these, one, namely medical inspection of schools 
this is perhaps nowhere carried farther than in some wards of Paris, 
where young physicians inspect the eyes, ears, and digestion of each 
child, and note in a health-book suggestions to both parents and 
teachers as to diet, regimen, exercise, and studies, besides inspecting 
the buildings and grounds. The assumption is that all must be 
judged from the standpoint of health, and that an educational system 
must make children better and not worse, in health." 


A closing word will not be out of place on th ill-effects of 
over-straining and unsuitable exercise. The danger in the 
misuse of athletics is more that against which the young have 
to guard, for they are apt to misjudge their powers and, in a 
foolish spirit of rivalry, to over-tax them. This tendency 
should be frowned upon and discouraged ; and to effect this, 
no number of young men should be permitted to take exer- 
cise together, except under watchful and competent super- 
vision. The use, or even the lifting, of heavy weights should 
also be discouraged, by those at least who have not the ade- 
quate strength, or do not know the " knack " in handling them. 


Unless well-coached, the young athlete is almost certain to 
stand badly or poise his body in such a way as to overstrain 
some muscle upon which the weight should not have fallen, 
or not have mainly fallen, and, it may be, run the risk of rup- 
ture. There is also danger to the heart to be guarded against 
in indulging in violent exercise. So far as medical testimony 
goes, however, the instances are not many where injurious 
results have followed upon even severe physical exertion ; 
and all that need be regarded is to be temperate and sensible. 
Of course, what may be excessive or unsuitable exercise in 
one man may not be so in another. Experience and common- 
sense must here be the judge. 


MODERN civilisation is seriously discredited by the ignorance 
usually to be met with in regard to the effects of exercise on 
the bodily functions. If there were more enlightenment on 
this subject, it is not too much to say, that the race would 
live longer and the average health would be higher. Of all 
topics vital to humanity that of health admittedly is the 
most important ; and yet it is a subject on which few people 
talk with concern and at the same time with practical intelli- 
gence. Converse with any ten men you meet on the subject 
of physical training as an aid to health, and of the number 
you will, as a rule, find but one man interested, and, more 
than likely, he will be a valetudinarian. So long as he is not 
actually ill, it is extraordinary how content the average man 
is to go on in almost the lowest plane of vitality, and with 




the minimum both of health and of strength. Nor, when ill- 
ness finally seizes him, in nine cases out of ten, does he in the 
least know what to do. In this respect, with all his boasted 
intelligence, he is usually in a worse plight than his cat or his 
dog. Without resource in himself, the resort, when he has 
got tired of ailing, is commonly to the doctor. Then empir- 
icism, more often perhaps than science, has its innings, and, 
unless he is unusually lucky, he finds that instead of one man 
not knowing intelligently what to do for him, there are two. 


The ignorance we premise on the subject of health and the 
conditions that best make for it, is, to those who are charged 
with the public care of it, as startling as it is calamitous. In 
no province of inquiry is there more p'itiful data currently 
gathered than in that which takes note of the insanitary con- 
ditions under which most people live in the neglect of syste- 
matic daily exercise as an agent and promoter of health. If 
we return once more to the subject in this chapter, it is be- 
cause of its paramount importance, though we do so, we 
know, at the risk of being charged with advancing only 
another nostrum for the ailments of the race. Call muscular 
exercise, however, a nostrum if you will, it can have no kin- 
ship with quack remedies in this, that the patient will know 
what he is taking, and can soon test its efficacy and discern 
its effects. Given a good system of physical training to work 
on, and intelligent counsel as a guide, a brief novitiate is all 
that is needed to produce results that will astonish as well as 
gratify the most sceptical. 


A course of training entered upon with the design of pro- 


moting health, and, so far as one can, of perfecting the 
human organism, is surely worthy of more than a lukewarm 
interest. The ambition to be healthy is no less commendable 
than is the ambition to be successful, skilful, or strong. 
Health is axiomatically affirmed to be the first of requisites, 
yet how much, and again how little, do we severally mean by 
the saying ? The life-preserving instinct still survives in the 
race, but in myriads of instances, from our ignorance or 
contumacy, how little is that life worth living. Our whole 
manner of life is now a constant disregard of healthy instincts 
and a crass setting of nature at defiance. ' ' We have' perfected 
every mechanical invention," observes a thoughtful writer, 
" while we have suffered our bodies the most perfect machine 
of all to atrophy or rust." For specimens of exultant health, 
we perforce have nowadays to go to the savage. Our cities, 
with their artificial life and acres of contracted fusty flats 
and miasmatic tenement houses, do not produce them ; nor 
hardly do we dare to look for them even in the country, 
where the feverish excitements and degenerating conventions 
of the town have now penetrated. So far from seeking in 
these quarters for sound bodies and robust health, we have 
come to look for, if not wide-spread disease, the conditions 
that but too surely make for it. On every side is seen a 
criminal disregard of the physiological laws of health, and, as 
a consequence, all kinds of physical and mental disorder, with 
an unarrested and well-nigh unregretted decadence in the 
higher functions of the human body. Instead of aiming to 
live, as we might, a joyous healthy life, unchequered by the 
penalties we must pay for our physiological sins, we have 
come to regard our everyday and all but universal ailments 
as the normal condition of mundane existence. 

"The farther you have strayed from Nature," observes an 
able medical writer, " the longer it will take you to retrace 
your steps. " The remark reads like a satire on the dismal ef- 

' 172 

forts of our moral regenerators to improve upon Nature, to 
counteract the vicious tendencies of modern life, and to do 
everything but stay at its source the progress of physical 
degeneracy. The same authority we have cited adds, with 
a touch of pardonable cynicism, that " we have countless 
benevolent institutions for the prevention of outright death, 
but not one benevolent enough to make life worth living." 
Could we have in every town free gymnasia as we have in 
many free public baths, the reproach, in large measure, might 
be removed. But we have, as a nation, grown reckless of the 
public health, as we have grown callous in respect to its claims. 
This the mortality tables of our large cities, with their ap- 
palling record of the march to the grave of half-spent lives, 
seem distressingly to prove. Our supineness, we suppose, will 
go on until either some commanding voice arises to prick 
effectually the stifled conscience of a heedless, though humane, 
people, or a time of national peril will again come, when the 
physical vigour of the nation's muscle-defence will be tried in 
the balance and found wanting. 


Did we give heed to the subject, there would be no doubt of 
the supreme value of daily muscular exercise to the mental 
and bodily system. We bracket the two, for physiological 
science has put beyond question the inter-relation of body and 
brain, and the great activity of function which results from 
the expenditure of muscular energy. It is one of the inter- 
esting points in the study of this subject, to note the physio- 
logical effects of exercise on the human organism. Alike in 
the brain that thinks and in the muscle that acts, results are 
immediately visible which are as striking as they are incon- 
testable. Negatively, this is shown in the identical disturb- 
ances that take place in the system after excessive physical ex- 


ercise, and after exhausting mental toil. Physicians tell us, 
among other things in common, that there is the same tur- 
bidity of the urine, due to the imperfect burning of the nitro- 
genous waste substances, which have otherwise to be elimi- 
nated from the system. The points of positive similarity are 
no less remarkable where the results are stimulating and ben- 
eficial. There is the same increase in the blood-supply after 
exercise, and a greater production of heat, both being essen- 
tial to strenuous bodily and intellectual effort. The fortifying 
and invigorating influence of active blood-circulation every one 
has experienced for himself : when the muscles are heated, 
the functional activity increases, and the body is then most 
apable of energetic action. Under active exercise, to use an 
ordinary figure, we increase the fire-draught, and with in- 
creased fire-draught there is more rapid combustion and there- 
fore more heat. This functional stimulation of the body neces- 
sarily calls for greater supplies of oxygen, and this again pro- 
duces enrichment of the blood, and has an energising effect 
upon the nutritive processes. The heart, moreover, under- 
goes change of size and structure, frees itself from impeding 
fats, and becomes more fitted for its arduous work. With 
exercise which increases the contractile power of the muscles, 
the muscles themselves become more elastic, less susceptible 
to injury and fatigue, and more firm and enduring. Thus, 
like the workman who has command of his resources, and can 
improve the tools of his craft, he who, by exercise, keeps his 
body in good form is best able to use his organs of work and 
movement to the fullest advantage and likely to maintain 
himself in the highest degree of health. Practice will, at the 
same time, teach him the best methods of utilising his forces 
how to economise his breath, conserve his strength, and 
call to his aid the muscles most fitted for his daily tasks. 


Habituation to exercise not only renders hard work easier 
to perform, but it economises the effort necessary to accom- 
plish it. Mr. Sandow is himself a striking example in this 
respect ; you never see him either breathless or excited, and, 
even under severe strain, his heart-beat is very uniform, and 
seldom does he perspire. Beyond any one we have ever seen, 
he has the most perfect command of his powers. Not only 
are his muscles marvellously strong, but, to a phenomenal 
degree, he has acquired the knack of intelligently using them. 
In the novice, the action of certain muscles is paralysed, as it 
has been phrased, by the awkward intervention of their an- 
tagonists. It is not so, we need hardly say, with the re- 
nowned athlete. Every muscle, in his case, is so perfectly 
trained, as well as under such immediate control, that it does 
its own assigned duty ; while co-ordination of movements is 
with him rigidly yet unconsciously practised. The effect of 
this is to distribute the burden of the heavy weights he sup- 
ports evenly over the muscles, so that no one of them is put 
to an undue strain. As a human motor, there is not only 
wonderful strength in Mr. Sandow's muscles, but remark- 
able facility and ease in their working, amounting almost to 
automatism ; while there is little or no drain upon the 
nervous system. 


In the case of notable athletes, the chief secret of being 
able to bear great burdens is this, that they know how to 
distribute the strain of the heavy weights they lift over the 
whole organism, calling into aid not only the muscles of the 
arm, but those of the trunk and legs, as well as utilising the 
main framework of the body, the vertebral column, pelvis, 


and bones of the lower limbs. They have also learnt the art 
of so poising the frame that any heavy weight held aloft by 
the arm shall be parallel to the general direction of the ver- 
tebral column, resting upon the nicely-balanced lower limbs 
and the firmly-planted feet. The co-operation of the bones 
and muscles of the whole body becomes with practice so easy, 
that the movements they engage in are accomplished almost 
automatically, and without taking possession of the brain, or, 
as we have said, consciously drawing upon the nervous force. 
That this can be done at all, is one of the curious facts in 
mental science, for the spinal cord, which is primarily a con- 
ductor of movements initiated by the brain, seems to have a 
memory, and, after a certain habituation to the work to be 
performed, is able to repeat the movements without much, if 
any, intervention of. the will. Fatigue thus becomes a 
muscular, rather than a nervous, otrain, a matter of prime 
importance to the athlete. 


The absence of fat in the human machine is another of the 
advantages to the athlete, as it prevents clogging of the 
muscles and the breathlessness which a fat man suffers from 
by the formation in the system of carbonic acid, caused by 
the rapid combustion of the fatty tissues under active mus- 
cular exercise. For the reduction of fat, as well as for pro- 
ducing that perfect equilibrium of the functions most favour- 
able to health, there is no better specific than systematic 
physical training. With persistence in training, and 
especially in performing the exercise, No. 15, prescribed in the 
practical section of this volume, the problem of obesity can 
be solved, aided by the usual precautions as to diet. The 
exercise to which we have referred is important in this, that 
it effectively attacks the constitutional as well as the reserve 


fat tissue, in the region which has an awkward tendency to 
conserve it, and if constantly practised will reduce its extent, 
if it does not cause it wholly to disappear. The elimination 
of the fat will get rid also of breathlessness and the excessive 
aqueous secretions induced by active exercise. The excretory 
organs, moreover, will have less to do, and, with advantage 
to the health, be more free to assist the process of dissimi- 

We need hardly do more than mention the necessity of the 
daily cold bath after exercise and plenty of fresh air while ex- 
ercising. We shall, later on, have more to say of these essen- 
tials ; meanwhile, their importance should not be overlooked 
by the athlete-in-training. The skin has functions to per- 
form, excretory as well as respiratory ; and it is of vital con- 
sequence that it should be enabled to do its dual work under 
the most favouring circumstances. Not less essential to the 
bodily health and vigour, is the need of copious supplies of 
pure vivifying air, if the blood is to be well-oxygenated and 
vital activity promoted through respiratory energy. Good 
nourishing food and abundant sleep, with, if practicable, 
occasional intervals of repose during the working hours, 
should not be neglected, while the physical as well as the 
mental man will be the gainer by maintaining, as far as pos- 
sible, a tranquil and unharassed mind. Attention to these, 
among other points elsewhere dwelt upon, will be of import- 
ance, especially to the youth who seeks in systematic muscular 
exercise to improve his bodily functions and maintain himself 
in robust physical health and active mental vigour. 



IT will be convenient if we devote a page or two to a brief 
description and naming of the chief muscles actively concerned 
in the movements of the body, or of parts of it, so that we 
may know them when they are designated in the exercises, 
and apprehend their functions. In the human body, the mus- 
cles are of two kinds : (1) those that belong to the animal life, 
named the voluntary muscles, as they act in response to the 
will ; and (2) those that are concerned with the organic life, 
named the involuntary muscles, which, as a rule, are not con- 
trolled by the will. The former furnish the machinery of 
locomotion and work, by the use of which we perform all the 
acts of life, as in walking, running, lifting, carrying, breath- 
ing, speaking, singing, etc. The latter subserve the purposes 


of organic life, and have important functions as aids to nutri- 
tion, digestion, circulation, etc. The two kinds are otherwise 
distinguished as striped and unstriped muscles, each varying 
somewhat in its structure, the striped being, as a rule, fibrous 
and striated, the unstriped smooth and cellular. Both are 
endowed with the property of contractility, the voluntary 
muscles contracting more rapidly than the involuntary, and 
markedly so as the result of active bodily exercise. The volun- 
tary muscles, as they lie chiefly on the surface, form, with the 
skin, the protective sheathing of the body, and are the means 
by which the bones are fastened together and made to hinge 
on their joints. Their form is generally either flat and rib- 
bon-shaped, or bunched up in the middle in short layers, with 
tapering ends attached by sinews or tendons, at the one end 
to a fixed bone, designated the muscle-origin, at the other to 
a movable bone, or integument, designated the muscle- inser- 
tion. The voluntary muscles have this peculiarity incident 
to their contracting power, viz., that they are, for the most 
part, so arranged as to antagonise or oppose each other, one 
set pulling in one direction, the other set pulling in another. 
This contrariety of action we see in operation when we open 
and close the hand or bend and straighten out the arm. The 
muscles of the head, the shoulder, the back, and the lower 
limbs, act in the same way, there being for every motion in 
one direction a counter-motion in another. In the case of the 
involuntary muscles, it is this contracting power that operates 
on the blood-vessels and the intestines, by forcing on, in the 
former, the circulation of the blood, and the passage, in the 
latter, of nutritive or excretory matter through or out of the 
system. The two sets of antagonistic muscles are named, as 
we have hitherto indicated, the flexors, or pullirig and drawing- 
up muscles, and the extensors, or relaxing and opening-out 
ones. The operation of the flexors is seen in the arm when it 
is flexed, that is, bent or pulled up. It is also seen in the 


palm of the hand when the fingers are closed, and in the 
lower limbs, when they are drawn up at the doubling of the 
knee-joint. The action of the extensors is seen in the com- 
plementary motion, which is the reverse of all these, as in the 
operation of the triceps, at the back of the upper arm, which 
extends or straightens the forearm out when it has been flexed 
or doubled up. Another instance may be given of the counter- 
action of opposing muscles, namely, in the case of the deltoid 
muscle, the thick, fan-shaped, fibrous layer which envelops 
the shoulder, and whose function it is to raise the arm set 
against the pectoral muscle (the Pectoralis Major) which 
covers the upper and forepart of the chest, acting in concert 
with the lumbar and dorsal muscles (the Latissimus dorsi and 
the Teres Major), whose combined function it is to draw the 
arm down, assisted, of course, by its own weight. 

Generally speaking, the voluntary muscles only are acted 
upon by the will, communicated through the motor nerves. 
Exercise, we have already seen, stimulates the action of the 
muscles, for muscular contraction produces animal heat, and 
a heated muscle, we know, acts more quickly and powerfully 
than one at a normal temperature. Heat, moreover, quickens 
the action of the heart, and this again has its effect on the 
blood, and, through the blood, a prime factor is set in motion 
in repairing the waste material and renewing the life-giving 
properties of the body. The more actively we call the mus- 
cles into play, the more beneficial will the results be on the 
strength and health of the body. But the muscles are not 
only the vehicles through which the will acts, in inciting 
to labour and movement ; they play an important part in 
the functions of breathing, speaking, seeing, and hearing. 
They also perform an involuntary service in giving expression 
to the feelings and emotions, through the muscles of the face, 
including those of the eyes and the mouth. In this latter 
respect, healthful exercise becomes, one might almost say, a 


moral duty ; for it not only lightens up the face and gives 
mobility to the muscles of expression, but has a bracing effect 
on the mind and an enlivening influence on the spirits. Nor 
should we forget that the muscles form more than one-half of 
the bulk of the body, and if we neglect their due development 
and withhold the invigorating influence which exercise exerts 
upon them, we commit a crime the gravity of which few 
adequately appreciate. 

The muscles, of which there are at least five hundred in 
number, are named from their uses, shape, situation, and 
direction ; sometimes also from their points of attachment, 
as well as from the number of their divisions ; such as the 
Biceps and the Triceps, the two-headed flexor, and the three- 
headed extensor, muscles of the arm. We shall confine our 
notice only to the chief voluntary muscles, to which the sub- 
sequent course of exercises will in part refer, and for the 
development and strengthening of which the movements are 
especially designed to aid. In the following enumeration and 
memorandum of the functions of the muscles treated of 
namely, those of the upper and lower limbs, the thoracic 
cavity, and the trunk we owe our indebtedness chiefly to the 
great text-books on anatomy, of Quain and Gray. Our descrip- 
tions will be materially helped by the anatomical plates re- 
produced in these pages, after drawings by Prof. Roth. 

Let us first deal with the muscles of the upper and fore part 
of the chest, the shoulder, the arm and forearm ; being those 
that come into play as the chief organs of motion, and, with the 
intercostals, the great muscle of the lateral thoracic region 
the Serratus Magnus and the pectoral muscles of the anterior 
thoracic region, assist in the process of breathing, among their 
other important functions. The first place has to be given to 
the DELTOID muscle, which covers the shoulder, whose function 
it is to raise the arm directly from the side, so as to bring it 
at right angles with the body. Its fore-fibres, aided by the 


Pectoralis Major, the broad triangular muscle situate at the 
upper and forepart of the chest, draw the arm forwards and up- 
wards, while its rear fibres, assisted by the Teres Major and 
Latissimus dorsi the muscles that extend from under the 
shoulder-blade over the lumbar and lower half of the dorsal 
regions draw it backwards and downwards, or enable it to 
rotate when extended. The deltoid acts as a cap and protector 
to the deep structures of the shoulder- joint, its muscular fibres 
being coarse, and so disposed in layers as to reinforce one 
another and increase their functional power. For its power, 
it depends mainly upon the shoulder-blade, steadied by the 
serratus magnus, the head of the triceps, and the middle fibres 
of the trapezius muscles, to be hereafter described. When 
the deltoid has raised the arm to the horizontal position, its 
further elevation is effected by the serratus magnus and tra- 
pezius. The rounded prominence of the shoulder is due in 
part to the thick coating of the deltoid, but mainly to the 
form of the upper extremity of the arm-bone, which can be 
felt moving under the muscle as the arm is rotated. 

The PECTORALIS MAJOR, which adjoins the Deltoid muscle 
and has its attachment below it, extends from the region of the 
collar-bone in front of the armpit over the anterior portion of 
the ribs. We have already pointed out one of its functions, 
in conjunction with the Deltoid muscle ; another enables it to 
draw the arm forward and rotate it inwards upon the chest. 
It also performs another service, in concert with the Pectoralis 
Minor and the Subclavius muscles, which lie beneath the Pec- 
toralis Major, in drawing the ribs upwards and expanding the 
chest, when the arms and shoulders are fixed ; and is thus an 
important agent in forced inspiration. Another important 
muscle, allied with the Pectoral and Subclavius in the latter 
work, of elevating the ribs and dilating the chest, is the SERRA- 
TUS MAGNUS. This muscle, which forms the inner wall of the 
armpit, wraps the eight upper ribs on the sides of the chest, 


its deep surface resting upon them and the intercostal mus- 
cles. It assists the Trapezius muscle, which covers the upper 
and back part of the neck and shoulders, in supporting weights 
on the shoulder. It also lends its aid as a muscle of forced 
inspiration. The serratus magnus muscle, by withdrawing 
the base and lower angle of the shoulder-blade from the spinal 
column, enables the arm, when raised from the shoulder, to 
be still further outstretched, as in lunging with the dumb- 
bells. It also comes powerfully into action in all movements 
of pushing. 

The TRAPESIUS is the flat, double muscle, triangular in form, 
which covers the upper and back part of the neck and 
shoulders, extending from the posterior part of the head, and 
from the spinal column in the neck and back to the back part 
of the collar-bone and shoulder-blade. It is divided in two 
by the upper part of the spine. The function of each, separ- 
ately, is to draw back the shoulder-blade, and by rotating it, 
to raise the shoulder, and also to draw the head and spme 
to the side. Jointly, the two trapezii have power to pull the 
head back and to draw the shoulder-blades towards the spine. 
The LATISSIMUS DORSI is the broad, flat muscle which covers 
the lumbar and lower dorsal regions, beneath and below the 
trapezius. It extends obliquely upwards on both sides of the 
spine from the dorsal vertebra?, where it has its origin, to its 
insertion in the inner and front portion of the humerus, 
or arm-bone, near the upper end, and not far from the 
shoulder-joint. Its action, in concert with the pectoral 
muscles, is to draw the arms inwards and backwards, as in 
the act of swimming ; or, if the arms are extended or 
elevated, the latissimus dorsi has the power, jointly with the 
pectoral and abdominal muscles, to draw the body forwards, 
as in the act of walking on crutches, or upwards, as in 

We now come to the muscles of the arm and forearm, 


which have so much to do in the active and useful work of 
life. For this work, the upper-arm is especially strong, being 
furnished with long, stout muscles, bunched in the middle by 
deep layers of connective tissue, and firmly fastened in their 
end-settings so as to withstand the strain they have to bear. 
On the front face of the arm is the two-headed muscle, the 
BICEPS, which is so prominent as to be seen and felt, from its 
origin, at the head of the arm-bone, underneath the triangu- 
lar point of the deltoid muscle which envelops the shoulder, 
to its flattened tendon insertion near to and below the bend 
of the elbow. This long spindle-shaped muscle, which occu- 
pies the whole of the front surface of the upper arm, is the 
great flexor of the arm ; it also acts as a supinator, and serves 
to render tense the fascia, or small membranes, of the fore- 
arm, by means of the broad enswathing band given off from 
its tendon. When the forearm is fixed, the BICEPS and BRACH- 
IALIS ANTICUS flex the arm upon the forearm, as seen in the 
effort of climbing. On the hinder part of the arm, extend- 
ing along the entire length of the arm-bone, is the TRICEPS 
muscle, the sole extensor, or straightening-out, muscle of the 
forearm. In this capacity, its action is that of a force applied 
to a lever of the first order. The triceps is the direct antago- 
niser of the biceps and brachialis anticus, for when the lat- 
ter muscle bends the arm upwards at the elbow, the former 
draws it into a right line with the arm again. The BRACHIALIS 
ANTICUS is the muscle which lies immediately behind and 
projects on each side of the biceps. It covers and forms an 
important defence to the elbow- joint and the lower half of 
the front arm-bone, and is, as we have pointed out, a flexor 
of the elbow. The CORACO-BRACHIALIS, the remaining mus- 
cle of the front upper-arm, is the small slender one arising 
in common with the short head of the biceps, from a pro- 
cess of the shoulder-blade extending down to the middle of 
the inner side of the humerus, or arm-bone. Its action is to 









draw the arm forwards and inwards upon the side of the 

The muscles of the forearm, though more numerous, need 
not especially detain us. They are divided into two groups, 
the front or inner, and the rear or outer groups, each again 
being divided into the surface muscles, and those of the deep- 
lying layers. As will be seen from the drawings that illustrate 
the region, most of the muscles have their source in the upper 
arm and enfold and protect the two bones, of which the fore- 
arm is composed the ulna, or elbow-bone, the larger of the 
two, and the radius, or outer bone, lying parallel with its 
fellow and reaching from the elbow to the wrist. The front 
or inner group consists of the flexors and pronators, that is, 
those that bend or turn the forearm, wrist, and hand ; the 
rear or outer group comprises the extensors and supinators, 
the direct antagonisers of the front group and that pull in the 
opposite direction. Most of the muscles of the forearm not 
only have, as we have said, their source in the arm proper, 
but are considerably strengthened by the tendinous fibres 
derived from the three great muscles of that upper limb. Of 
the flexor and pronator group, there are five superficial and 
three interior or deep-lying muscles. Technically, their 
actions are described by Gray as follows : " Those acting on 
the forearm are the pronator radii teres and pronator quad- 
ratus, which rotate the radius bone upon the ulna, rendering 
the hand prone (that is, turning the palm downward) ; when 
pronation has been fully effected the pronator radii teres 
assists the other muscles in flexing the forearm. The flexors 
of the wrist are the flexor carpi ulnaris and radialis, and the 
flexors of the phalanges (the line of the small bones of the fingers) 
are the flexors sublimis and profundus digitorum ; the former 
flexing the second phalanges, and the latter the last. The 
flexor longus pollicis flexes the last phalanx of the thumb. 
The three latter muscles, after flexing the phalanges, by con- 


tinuing their action, act upon the wrist, assisting the ordinary 
flexors of this joint ; and all those which are attached to the 
humerus (arm-bone) assist in flexing the forearm upon the 
arm. " 

The muscles that form the outer and rear group of the fore- 
arm, are three in the first division (the Radial region), and 
four surface and five deep-lying muscles in the second division 
(the Posterior brachial region). These, the antagonisers. as 
we have said, of the flexors, comprise all the extensor and su- 
pinator muscles, that is, those that straighten and turn upwards 
the forearm, wrist, and hand. One of the latter, the Anconeus, 
situate behind and below the elbow- joint, assists the triceps, 
of which it is a continuation, in extending the forearm. 
Others act in extending the wrist, etc. ; while still others do 
duty in turning the arm, wrist and hand upwards. For an 
enumeration of the intersecting muscles of the wrist and hand, 
we must refer the reader to the anatomical manuals. A 
glance, however, may be permitted us at the chief muscles of 
the abdomen, and those of the lower limbs and the deeper 
layer of the muscles of the back. And here it may be proper 
to remark, though the fact is generally applicable, that the 
force exerted by any muscle during its contraction is in pro- 
portion to the number of muscular elements or fibres compos- 
ing the muscle. This statement is made on the warrant of 
Quain, the famous anatomist, and its cogency will be admitted 
by those at least who know the increased power they derive from 
engaging in continuous and systematic muscular exercise. 
The gain is the more remarkable in the case of those who ex- 
ercise their intercostal and abdominal muscles, to the great 
benefit of their respiration and digestion. For an account of 
the functional actions of the abdominal muscles, we are in- 
debted to Dr. George McClellan (see his work on Regional Anat- 
omy). That authority points out, in the first place, that the 
crossed arrangement at the sides of the fibres of these muscles 


serves to strengthen the abdominal wall, and, when all the 
muscles of the region act together, they compress and support 
the viscera and protect them from internal injury. He goes 
on to say, that ' ' the muscles of the abdomen are quiescent 
and relaxed during inspiration, but they aid in expiration 
when the spine is fixed, by drawing the lower ribs downward 
and inward. When the pelvis is fixed, the thorax is inclined 
forward by the muscles of both sides acting together : if the 
muscles of one side act, the trunk is bent to that side. The 
oblique muscles cause rotation of the trunk, the external 
oblique turning it to the same side. This is seen in mowing, 
where the right external oblique and the left internal oblique 
are simultaneously brought into action. In climbing, the 
thorax serving as the base of attachment, the abdominal 
muscles draw the pelvis upward and forward. The chief action 
of the recti muscles is concerned in flexing the trunk when 
the pelvis is fixed. Their peculiar segmentation and en- 
closure in so firm a sheath enable them to maintain their 
action in all possible bendings of the body." 

The muscles of the back are very numerous and strengthen 
it by five successive layers. Those of the outer layer, the 
trapezius and the latissmus dorsi muscles, we have already 
dealt with. The region of the second layer is that of the 
shoulder-blade and the back part and side of the neck. 
The muscles of this layer assist in giving movement to 
the bones of the region. The third layer, which are chiefly 
respiratory muscles, connect the back ribs with the spine, a 
longitudinal section traversing the entire length of the back 
part of the thoracic region. The fourth and fifth layers, which 
also run vertically, from the dorsal and lumbar regions to the 
neck, are important muscles in keeping the spine erect, in 
rotating it, and in giving fixedness to the head and neck. 
The chief muscle of the fourth layer is the Erector spinse, 
which, with its accessories, the longissimus dorsi and spinalis 


dorsi, serves, as its name implies, to maintain the spine in the 
erect posture ; it also serves, observes Dr. Gray, "to bend the 
trunk backwards when it is required to counterbalance the 
influence of any weight borne in front of the body, as, for in- 
stance, when a heavy weight is suspended from the neck, or 
when there is any great abdominal development, as in preg- 
nancy or dropsy. " The other muscles of the back have various 
and manifold functions. Some muscles, besides giving sup- 
port to the spine, or acting successively on different parts of 
it, rotate it ; others again rotate the vertebrae on which the 
neck and head are poised ; yet others draw the head back- 
wards, or turn it from side to side. Still others, by their 
costal attachments, depress the ribs, and thus assist in forced 
expiration. Added to all these functions, is the no less prime 
one, of giving strength to the back, and, as extensors, of 
straightening it when bent. 

A word, in conclusion, with reference to the chief muscles 
of the lower extremity the hip, thigh, and leg. Before pass- 
ing to these, reference should be made to the muscles situate 
in the region of the lumbar vertebrae and the pelvis. The 
chief of these are the PSOAS MAGNUS and ILIACUS, which, act- 
ing from above, flex the thigh upon the pelvis, and at the same 
time rotate the thigh-bone outwards, from the obliquity of 
their insertion into the inner and back part of that bone. 
Acting from below, the thigh-bone being fixed, the muscles 
of both sides bend the lumbar portion of the spine and pelvis 
forward. They also serve to maintain the erect position, l>v 
supporting the spine and pelvis upon the thigh-bone, and assist 
in raising the trunk when the body is in the recumbent position. 
The Psoas Magnus muscle extends from the lumbar verte- 
brae to the upper and inner part of the thigh-bone ; the Ilia- 
cus from the inner surface of the pelvic bone to the femur, < >r 
bone of the upper leg, near the Psoas. Other assisting agents, 
in the act of moving the lower limbs and raising the body, 


are found in the muscles of the gluteal or buttocks region, 
and on which we sit. The chief of these is the coarse, ex- 
tensor muscle, the GLUTEUS MAXIMUS, upon which the body 
specially depends for its maintenance in the erect posture. 
It extends from the pelvis to the outer part of the thigh-bone. 
The action of the GLUTEUS MEDIUS from the ilium (the 
large, flattened pelvis bone) is to abduct the thigh ; while, 
acting from its insertion in the thigh-bone, it extends the pel- 
vis outwards, thereby assisting in balancing the body when 
standing on one leg. Its anterior fibres rotate the thigh in- 
wards, the posterior fibres rotate it outwards. The gluteus 
maximum extends the 'thigh-bone upon the pelvis, and thus 
aids the body to rise from the sitting to the erect position. 
It also aids in propelling the body in running and leaping. 

On the inner side of the thigh, connecting the thigh-bone 
with the front or middle of the pelvis, are a number of impor- 
tant muscles. These are the GRACILIS, PECTINEUS, and the 
three ADDUCTORS longus, brevis, and magnus. The gracilis 
assists the SARTORIUS, the tailor-muscle of the thigh, in flex- 
ing the leg and drawing it inwards ; it is also an adductor of 
the thigh. The pectineus and the three adductors are the 
chief agents in adducting or drawing close the thigh, as we 
see in equestrian exercise, the flanks of the horse being 
grasped between the knees by the action of these muscles.* 
These adductor muscles, assisted by the Psoas and Iliacus, 
the thigh upon the pelvis ; in walking, they also assist 

drawing forward the hinder limb. 

)own the front and outer face of the thigh, run the great 
CRUREUS, and VASTUS EXTERNUS. The four latter are 

lally spoken of as the QUADRICEPS EXTENSOR, or great 

* For the development of these muscles, Mr. Sandow has invented and patented 
chine, to which the reader or young athlete is elsewhere referred. 


extensor muscle of the leg. The action of the sartorius is to 
flex the leg upon the thigh, and, continuing, to flex the thigh 
upon the pelvis, at the same time drawing the limb inwards, 
so as to cross one leg over the other. Its position may be 
traced by the hand, as it passes obliquely across the front of 
the thigh to the inner side, and then descends vertically as 
far as the knee, behind which it has its insertion. It is the 
longest muscle in the body, extending from the pelvis to the 
inner surface of the tibia, and has the power also of flexing 
the pelvis upon the thigh, and, if one alone acts, it can rotate 
the pelvis. The quadriceps extensor extends the leg upon the 
thigh and straightens the knees. It has a four-headed origin 
(hence its name) in the anterior, inner and outer surfaces 
of the femur, near the hip-joint ; while its lower insertion is 
the knee-cap and shin-bone, just below the knee-joint. " Tak- 
ing its fixed point from the leg, as in standing," says Dr. Gray, 
" this muscle will act upon the thigh-bone, supporting it 
perpendicularly upon the head of the tibia (shin-bone), and 
thus maintaining the entire weight of the body." The rec- 
tus femoris muscle, which extends from the pelvis to the 
knee-cap, ''assists the psoas and iliacus in supporting the 
pelvis and trunk upon the thigh-bone, or in bending it for- 

The muscles of the back of the thigh are the BICEPS, SEMI- 
TENDINOSUS, and SEMI-MEMBRANOSUS. These are familiarly 
called the "Hamstring muscles," and their function is to ilex 
the leg upon the thigh. They are peculiar, observes Dr. 
McClellan, " in that they are too short to allow of full flexion 
of the hip while the leg is extended. They possess what is 
called the ' ligamentous function,' owing to their attachment 
passing over the two joints of the hip and the knee. Tims, 
when the pelvis is fixed, the thigh can be only moderately 
flexed while the knee is straight, but as soon as the knee is 
flexed the hamstring muscles are relaxed and the thigh can be 


entirely flexed. Acting from below, these muscles serve to 
support the pelvis upon the head of the thigh-bone, prevent- 
ing the trunk from falling forward. This is well shown in 
feats of strength, where the body is thrown backward. When 
the knee is semi-flexed the biceps rotates the leg slightly out- 
ward, owing to its oblique direction downward and outward ; 
and in the same way the semi-tendinosus and semi-membran- 
osus assist the popliteus (the 'ham' or back part of the 
knee-joint) in rotating the leg inward." The hamstring mus- 
cles extend from that part of the pelvic bone on which we 
rest while sitting to the bones of the leg, the biceps being at-, 
tached to the fibula, or outer bone, the other muscles to 
the shin-bone, or tibia. 

We now come to the muscles of the front, outer face, andj 
back of the leg proper, that is, from the ankle to the knee. 
Those in the first group are the TIBIALUS ANTICUS, the thick, 
fleshy muscle on the outer side of the shin-bone and parallel with 
it, whose function it is, besides aiding in balancing the body at 
the ankle, to flex the latter and evert, or turn out, the foot ; 
DIGITORUM, and its tendinous extension, the PERONEUS TER- 
TIUS. The latter and the tibialis anticus are the direct flexors 
of the instep ; they raise and extend the foot and perform the 
function of walking. The other muscles act upon the toes, 
and, with their consorts, aid in holding the bones of the leg 
in the perpendicular position and give strength to the ankle- 
joint. The muscles of the outer side of the leg are the PER- 
ONEUS LONGUS and PERONEUS BREVIS, which serve to steady the 
leg upon the foot and aid in maintaining the perpendicular 
direction of the limb. They also act as the extensors of the 
foot, thus antagonising the tibialus anticus and peroneus ter- 
tius, which are flexors. 

The muscles of the back of the leg are found in two layers, 
those of the surface constituting the strong muscular mass 


which forms the calf. The latter are called the GASTROCNE- 
MIUS, the PLANTARIS, and the SOLEUS muscles. Their action 
is chiefly to raise the body on the toes. With reference to the 
calf -muscles, Dr. Gray remarks that " they possess considerable 
power and are constantly called into use in standing, walking, 
dancing, and leaping ; hence the large size they usually 
present. In walking, these muscles draw powerfully upon 
the os calcis (the heel-bone) raising the heel, and with it the 
entire body from the ground ; the body being thus supported 
on the raised foot, the opposite limb can be carried forward. 
In standing, the Soleus, taking its fixed point from below, 
steadies the leg upon the foot, and prevents the body from 
falling forward, to which there is a constant tendency from 
the superincumbent weight." The deeper- lying muscles of 
the back leg are the POPLITEUS, the flat muscle that covers the 
hollow space at the back of the knee-joint, and assists in flex- 
ing the leg upon the thigh ; the TIBIALIS POSTICUS, the most 
deeply-seated of the muscles of the leg ; the FLEXOR LONGUS 
situate alongside the outer and smaller bone of the leg, the 
latter alongside the shin-bone. These two latter muscles are 
the flexors of the toes, and, continuing their action, extend 
the foot upon the leg ; they also assist in extending the foot 
as in the act of walking, or in standing on tiptoe. The tib- 
ialis posticus is a direct extensor of the instep upon the leg, 
and, acting in concert with the tibialis anticus, it turns the 
sole of the foot inward, antagonising the peroneus longus, 
which turns it outward. Covering the lower part of these 
muscles, and extending for about six inches upward from the 
heel, is the TENDO ACHILLIS, the thickest and strongest of the 
tendons in the body. The muscles of the ankles and feet need 
not detain us, our topographical survey of the body, in so 
far as the muscles benefited by exercise are concerned, having 
taken us far enough. It is well perhaps to note, before leav- 


ing this chapter, that the action of the muscles of which we 
have been treating may be reversed, according to the part 
fixed while the individual muscle is contracting. 







(By permission of Messrs. H. Grevel & Co., London.) 


1. Annular ligament. 

2. Flexor longus pollicis. 

3. Flexor carpi radialis. 

4. Palmaris longus muscle. 

5. Pronator teres muscle. 

6. Supinator longus muscle. 

7. Biceps muscle. 

8. Triceps muscle. 

9. Coraco-brachialis muscle. 

10. Teres major muscle. 

11. Deltoid muscle. 

12. Pectoralis major muscle. 

13. Serratus magnus muscle. 

14. Trapezius muscle. 

15. Supinator longus muscle. 

16. Brachialis anticus muscle. 

17. External oblique muscle. 

8. Gluteus medius. 

19. Gluteus maximus. 

20. Tensor vaginae femoris. 

21. Rectus abdominis muscle. 

22. Adductor longus. 

23. Gracilis muscle. 

24. Semi-membranosus muscle. 

25. Rectus femoris muscle. 

26. Vastus internus muscle. 

27. Sartorius muscle. 

28. Vastus externus muscle. 

29. Gastrocnemius muscle. 

30. Tibialis anticus muscle. 

31. Soleus muscle. 

32. Tendo Achillis. 

33. Anterior annular ligament. 

34. Fascia lata. 


1. Extensor carpi ulnaris. 

2. Flexor carpi ulnaris. 

3. Anconeus muscle. 

4. Biceps muscle. 

5. Triceps muscle. 

6. Tendon of Triceps. 

7. Deltoid muscle. 

8. Trapezius muscle. 

9. Latissimus dorsi. 

10. Serratus magnus muscle. 

11. External oblique muscle. 

12. Gluteus medius. 

13. Gluteus maximus. 

14. Tensor vaginae femoris. 

15. Rectus femoris muscle. 

16. Externus vastus muscle. 

17. Gracilis muscle. 

18. Semi-membranosus muscle. 

19. Internus vastus muscle. 

20. Sartorius muscle. 

21. Gastrocnemius muscle. 

22. Tendo Achillis. 

23. Peroneus longus. 

24. Tibialis anticus muscle. 

25. Tibialis posticus. 



a. Gluteus medius muscle. h. Vastus externus. 

b. Tensor vaginae femoris. i. Gastrocnemius. 

c. Adductor longus.. /. Peroneus longus muscle. 

d. Rectus femoris muscle. k. Tibialis anticus. 

e. Gracilis muscle. I. Soleus muscle. 

/. Sartorius muscle. m. Tibialis posticus muscle. 

g. Vastus internus. 


a. Adductor longus muscle. g. Semi-tendinosus muscle. 

6. Rectus femoris muscle. h. Semi-membranosus muscle. 

c. Sartorius muscle. i. Tibialis anticus muscle. 

d. Vastus internus muscle. j. Gastrocnemius. 

e. Gracilis muscle. fc. Soleus muscle. 

/. Adductor magnus muscle. I. Annular ligament. 


a. Gluteus medius muscle. g. Biceps femoris muscle, 

ft. Gluteus maximus muscle. h. Gracilis muscle. 

c. Vastus externus. i. Gastrocnemius. 

d. Vastus internus. j. Soleus muscle. 

e. Semi-membranosus muscle. k. Flexor longus digitorum. 
/. Semi-tendinosus muscle. , I. Tendo Achillis. 








BEFORE proceeding to the movements proper, to be detailed 
in the following exercises, the pupil-in-training would do well 
to devote some little time at first to a number of free exer- 
cises, with the dumb-bells, so as to give suppleness to the 
limbs, enable the would-be athlete to acquire correct habits of 
breathing, and accustom himself to easy and well-balanced 
postures of the body, with due attention to erectness, yet with 
freedom from rigidity and constraint. The first thing to do 
is to assume, and practice facility in maintaining the proper 
standing attitude of the recruit-in-training. This, the com- 
mencing position, should be as follows : The heels in line and 
closed, the knees held well back, and the toes turned out at 
an angle of 60 degrees. The body full to the front, straight, 
and inclined forward, so that its weight shall fall on the arch 


of the instep, supported by the ball of the toes, and only 
lightly on the heels. The arms should hang tensely from the 
shoulders, hands firmly grasping the dumb-bells, second 
joints of the fingers lightly touching the thighs. The hips a 
little drawn back, the chest advanced, and the shoulders 
square. The head erect, the chin slightly drawn in, and the 
eyes looking straight to the front. Eegard to this, the proper 
attitude of the military cadet at "attention," ought to be 
rigidly enforced in commencing the exercises ; for correct 
habits of bearing the body, when properly acquired, confirm 
themselves without any exertion, and will add materially to 
the health and strength of the young athlete. 

The great matter to be here attained is, in the case of the 
young, to quicken the muscular system to a due degree of 
flexibility, and, in the case of the mature or old, to awaken 
that which has become stiff or lain dormant, and to train it to 
become pliant and yielding. We all know the pleasant feel- 
ing which we experience when we stretch ourselves when 
wearied, or when, having sat long in a constrained and un- 
natural attitude, we have got up and, as we say, shaken or 
pulled ourselves together, or gone off for a stiff walk. These 
are Nature's efforts at relaxation, and they can be greatly 
assisted, and ought to be, by some simple home-exercises, 
such as those about to be indicated, to relieve and take out the 
creases from the cramped form. The habit, if constantly 
practised, of going through these elementary stretching move- 
ments, will be found an invaluable one, and the results will be 
a surprise to many, in the increased suppleness that will ensue 
and the more perfect command that will be gained over the 
muscles and the joints. Those who are zealous for the 
general pursuit of physical culture cannot lay too much stress 
on these simple and initial exercises, for tney are the first 
principles in the art of giving mobility ana endurance to the 
human frame. They should, therefore, in ail cases, precede 


the more active exercises, for until you can unstiffen and 
relax the joints and their connecting muscles and tissues, you 
can only at the risk of injury proceed with the prescribed 
)hysical training. To bring the matter more immediately 
lome to the pupil, let him try at the outset to stoop, without 

ending the spine, to lace his shoes, touch the floor with his 

iger-tips, or, keeping his body as erect as he can, bring his 
38 to his teeth. He will find, if he tries, that a child can 

3at him at any of these tasks ; while, with practice, he will 
soon be able to rival his infant exemplar ; though, of course, 
he is not expected to become an acrobat or a contortionist. 

r hen he has attained this pliancy and increased the contractile 

)wer of his muscles, he will have gained much in the func- 
tional activity of the body, as well as mastered a pleasurable 

mtrol over his muscles and joints. Were anything further 
leeded to be said on this topic, it would be this, that without 
suppleness there is no grace, and the presentable man or 

roman is not the person whose muscles are atrophied or in- 
slastic, and whose joints are angular or creak. 

A little time, as has been said, should be devoted to the free 
movements, with the dumb-bells, and before entering upon 
the exercises proper. This will accustom the hands to the grip 

id weight of the bells. Like putting a rifle into the hand 
}f a soldier at squad-drill, when he has learnt his facings and 
bhe goose-step, it will steady the recruit and give resistance 
ind the requisite tension to the muscles, particularly those of 
bhe wrist and the forearm. The dumb-bells, it must here be 

epeated, should, for beginners especially, be of light construc- 
Dion, either of wood or of iron ; in the latter case, they may 
>e covered with leather. For women and the youth of both 

3xes, their weight should range from two to three pounds 

ich ; for male adults, from three to five pounds each. The 
length of time given daily to training must necessarily vary 

ith the age, capacity, and physical conditk n of the pupil, as 


well as with the amount of leisure he is at liberty to devote, 
at any one period of the day, to the movements. If thirty 
minutes cannot be given continuously to the exercises, perhaps 
fifteen can be snatched twice a day ; but, at the outset, any 
one exercise should not be prolonged beyond the point when 
the muscles tire, though every exercise should be continued until 
they ache, and the mind should be put into the work, that the 
muscles may feel the strain and receive the full benefit of the 
toning and building-up process. 

This is a point that cannot be too much impressed upon the 
pupil-in-training, as it is the basal fact upon which all success- 
ful physical instruction rests. There must be a concentration 
of the will-power upon the exercise in hand, and the dumb- 
bell must be held and used, not passively, but as a potentiality 
to be actively and strenuously exerted, that the muscles may 
first be loosened and then alternately contracted and relaxed, 
in the process which Nature has designed for their healthy 
growth and development. With flabby muscles there can 
hardly ever be vigorous frames or sound health. Nor need 
the possession of either be a matter of serious or difficult 
attainment. Much might be gained by an exercise of an hour 
or two a week in the intelligent use of a pair of light dumb- 
bells. Even out of a daily "constitutional" we might get 
more benefit did we impart energy to our movements, and put 
the muscles of progression to strain, in a sharp and exhila- 
rating walk, bearing in mind that the test of having put the 
muscles to use is to have tired them. 

In giving class-instruction with the dumb-bells, a strict in- 
structor will not allow any lounging about during the lessons. 
If the lessons are too protracted for the strength of some of 
the pupils, the latter should be encouraged to continue them 
as long as possible, but not to overtax their endurance or cause 
them to lose zest in their work. The exercises should always 
be returned to with pleasure, and taken up systematically and 


with eager ardour. Intervals for rest should be frequent, but 
when they occur, the pupil should be directed "to stand 
at ease" only, and not to fall out of the ranks, or throw 
down the dumb-bells heedlessly and without leave. It is 
hardly necessary to say that no one should be allowed to eat 
or take refreshments of any kind while the exercises are going 
on. If the mouth is dry, it may be moistened with a lozenge 
or confection. Nor should the instructor permit talking 
among the pupils during the lesson. If directed to perform a 
movement a certain number of times, they should count under 
their breath, always breathing freely, but naturally, by the 
use of the diaphragmatic muscle, which best raises the ribs, 
expands the chest, and gives freest play to the lungs. Even 
when putting the muscles to strain during a stiff exercise, the 
lips should be pressed together as little as possible, the air 
being inhaled through the nostrils, for the most part, though, 
in the case of active exercise, respiration may be permitted by 
the mouth. 

In performing the exercises, the pupil, if in the privacy of 
his own room, will find it less impeding and more comforta- 
ble to strip to the waist, or, if in class, to wear a light gymna- 
sium suit, and to spend his strength freely till the muscles tire 
and the perspiration comes. If possible, let nothing interfere 
with the time daily devoted to exercise. If this is persisted 
in, it will soon become a habit, and the pupil will find that if, 
perchance, he should miss a day's exercise, he will miss it as 
he misses his bath, and will not feel up to his usual work. 
The bath, which should be made ready beforehand, should 
always be taken after exercise, and if the heart is all right and 
the breathing regular, it may be taken even when heated, 
though it will be well to let a short interval elapse, so long, 
meanwhile, as he does not get chilled. The bath should always 
be cold, the head and breast being first laved with the hand in 
the water, and then, if it be winter, in for fifteen or twenty 


seconds and out, or for longer, if it be summer. Keep up a 
brisk action while in the bath, and when it has been taken, 
pat rather than rub the body dry. 

The preliminary exercises with the dumb-bells may now be 
entered upon. Those of immediate benefit are the movements 
tending to give free play to the muscles and joints which, in 
the later exercises, will bo drawn more heavily into service ; 
to relaxing and rendering them supple ; and to afford oppor- 
tunity for acquiring proper methods of breathing under ex- 
ercise ; care being taken to maintain, as far as possible, the 
erect position and an easy but well-governed control of the 
body. In breathing, this general rule may be observed, viz. : 
to inhale the air as the arms are raised or drawn back for 
action, and to exhale it as they descend or are brought forward 
t3 the position of " attention." In squatting or in movements 
where the body is lowered, the breath should be taken in the 
downward and expelled in the upward action. In all muscu- 
lar movements, the action of the lungs in breathing should 
be kept as free and unimpeded as possible that no strain be 
felt upon the air passages. All movements should be made 
evenly and without jerkiness, but with muscles tense and 
the mind set upon the exercise. Even in the case of the 
snatching -lifts with heavy weights, the same caution is to be 
observed, the mind retaining its balance and steady equilib- 
rium as well as the body. In exercising, see that there is an 
abundance of pure and fresh air, and that the body is un- 
hindered by tight clothing. 
The initial exercises with the bells include : 
A. The flexing, or bending, the hand inwards and outwards 
upon the wrist, and rotating or turning it round, long enough 
till the muscles ache. These movements will give free play 
and increased strength to the muscles of the forearm and 
wrist, add power to the hand, and firmness to the grasp. They 
should be performed left and right hand alternately, the eyes 


critically scanning the motions, and the will-power imparting 
the energy ; then both hands should be exercised simul- 
taneously. Prolonged exercise in this and other movements 
with the left hand will counteract the tendency to right- 
handedness and insure a symmetrical development of the 
body. The fingers can individually be strengthened by lifting 
the dumb-bells successively with each finger. 

B. Keeping the shoulders perfectly square, the body erect, 
the arms pendant and close to the sides, the hands firmly 
grasping the dumb-bells, fingers touching the thighs, move 
the head slowly backwards and forwards, from side to side, 
then roll it round to the right and left, as far as possible. 
With eyes to the front, now raise and depress the shoulder- 
blades and arms, as in shrugging the shoulders ; after which, 
elevate the arms at full length and in line with the body, and 
rotate them in both directions until the muscles are tired. 
These several movements will have a beneficial effect on the 
respiratory organs and give strength and mobility to the 
shoulder-joints, as well as to the muscles of the chest and 

C. Kesuming the attitude of attention, the dumb-bells still 
in hand, rotate or twist the body on its hip-axis alternately to 
the left and to the right, keeping the back and the legs 
straight during the movement ; then sway the trunk on the 
hips from side to side, bending sideways as far as may be 
comfortable ;. after which, bend the body backwards and for- 
wards, taking care to keep the legs straight, the chest pressed 
out, and the head undrooped. These movements will assist 
the circulation of the blood, as they alternately stretch and 
shorten the veins, stimulate the organs of the chest and 
abdomen, strengthen the muscles of the trunk, and give 
pliancy to the chief hinge of the body, the hip-joint. 

D. Toe and heel raising in succession may now be exercised, 
in which the weight of the body is alternately thrown on the 


toes and the heels, the body being kept upright, and accom- 
modating itself so far as to maintain the balance. This move- 
ment will loosen the ankle-joints, give strength to the muscles 
of the calf, and accustom the body to preserve the equilibrium. 
Keeping the body straight and the head erect, knee-bending 
and stretching may now be exercised, the movement being 
extended to the squatting position, in which the body is 
allowed to drop till the buttocks are in contact with the heels 
(the latter being raised from the ground, the weight of the 
body resting wholly on the toes), with an alternate quick re- 
cover to the attitude of attention. This latter movement 
brings into play the quadriceps extensor muscle, which extends 
the leg upon the thigh ; the former movement giving exercise 
to the muscles chiefly brought into use in the act of walking 
and the other motions of progression. 

Some of these free movements, the pupil-athlete will find, 
are taken up more systematically in the exercises proper : they 
are here suggested as a sort of "preliminary canter" or 
warming-up, before entering on the more serious training- 
drill which follows. All of them, of course, can be practised 
without the dumb-bells, and may be so recommended as an ini- 
tial practice for women and children, or for young men of 
weak constitution and indifferent health, to be afterwards fol- 
lowed, when the frame has been built up, by a course of the 
exercises proper with the dumb-bells. 

Before entering upon a systematic course of physical train- 
ing, the pupil should, to mark the gain in his development, 
sst down the date at which he commenced to practise, and 
take his height, weight, and the measurements of his chest 
(normal, relaxed, and expanded), neck, shoulders, forearm, 
upper arm, waist, thigh, and calf ; and, at stated intervals 
afterwards, register the increase he has gained, as the result 
of exercise, and as an encouragement to progress. The height 
taken should be that without shoes, and the weight that 


stripped, or in one's usual exercising attire. Of course, the 
measurements subsequently taken should be that in the attire, 
whatever it may be, when first measured, and, as far as 
possible, they should be taken at the same period of the day 
and after the same amount of muscular exercise. The meas- 
urements of the chest and upper and lower limbs should be skin 
measurements ; the chest girth being that well up under the 
arms, which should be horizontally extended, the line passing 
over the nipples. The forearm measurement should be that 
round the thickest part of the extended arm, hands clenched ; 
that of the upper arm over the ridge of the biceps when the fore- 
arm is flexed at the elbow. The thigh and calf measurements 
should be those round the thickest part, when the heels are 
raised from the ground and the toes are pressed firmly against 
it, knees well-braced back. 

In the following exercises each number is intended to 
develop its special muscle, or group of muscles ; they should 
therefore be taken up progressively in the order in which they 
appear. Those who can handle heavier weights than the five 
pound dumb-bells are recommended to take the simpler exer- 
cises with the latter weights first, until they see a visible 
improvement in their muscles and have trained them to 
pass to the heavier weights with ease and safety. All the 
simpler exercises should be performed with slightly bent knees, 
that the muscles of the thigh may share in the benefits to be 
derived from the movements. 



TAKE a dumb-bell in each hand, and come to the position of 
attention, as described in the opening sentences in the intro- 
duction to these exercises. Now, bend the knees slightly, and 
turn the inner side of the arms full to the front. In all exer- 
cises with the light-weight dumb-bells, the knees must be 
bent, that the muscles of the leg may feel the strain of the 
movements of the upper limbs. Tighten the grip of the hands 
on the dumb-bells, and make tense the muscles of the arms ; 
then alternately flex or bend each arm at the elbow inwards 
and upwards, till the dumb-bell is in line with the shoulder, 
back of the hand to the front, shoulders and elbows well 
drawn down, and the upper arms close to the sides. In 
lowering the dumb-bells, straighten the arm to its full length, 
and repeat the alternate movements till the muscles ache. 


This exercise will develop chiefly the flexor biceps muscle, and 
the triceps extensor muscle, of the upper arm. 


This exercise is the same movement as that in No. 1, except 
that in the position of attention the backs of the hands and 
the forearms are to the front, and, when the latter are flex<-d 
upwards on the elbows, the knuckles of the hands are close to 
the shoulders. The alternate motion of bending and extend- 
ing the arm at the elbow is to be performed rhythmically but 
vigorously, until the flexor and extensor muscles are made 
pliant and firm. The action will have a stimulating effect on 
the respiratory organs and the circulation of the blood. 


Come to the position of attention, knees bent as before, and 
raise both arms outwards, at full length, in a line with the 
shoulders. Now, turn the inner side of the forearms upwards, 
and alternately flex each inwards toward the head, until the 
dumb-bell is immediately over the shoulder. In practising 
this movement, maintain the arms rigidly in alignment with 
the shoulders ; in other words, do not let them droop ; and, 
in the straightening- out movement, extend the arms fully, 
and put the muscles to the strain. The chief muscle that 
comes into exercise here, besides the biceps and triceps of the 
arm, is the deltoid, the great muscle that caps the shoulder. 
The effect of these alternate arm-flexings is perhaps more 
beneficial than when both arms are flexed at the same time. 
Its chief advantage is that it gives one arm a momentary 
alternate rest, and does not overstrain the heart by unduly 
forcing the circulation of the blood. 



This exercise is the same as the last, the flexing movement 
of the forearms, however, being concurrent or simultaneous., 
and not alternate. See photo. No. 4, and the caution to be ob- 
served, indicated in the closing sentence of the preceding exer- 
cise. In the alternate straightening or opening-out move- 
ment, care should be taken to extend the arm fully, so that 
the extensor muscles may have fair play in counteracting the 
motion of the pulliiig-up or flexing muscles. 

The exercise may be varied with advantage by curving the 
back slightly and bending the head downwards ; at the same 
time bringing the flexed forearms inwards, underneath the 
upper arms and shoulders, and in this attitude ply the dumb- 
bells outwards from the armpits to the full extension of each 
arm. The exercise will be found beneficial for the biceps, 
triceps, and deltoid. It will also stimulate the breathing and 
quicken the blood-currents, to many perhaps the chief need 
as well as the great advantage of active muscular exercise. 
In the regular alternation of movements, such as are here 
and elsewhere in the series indicated, the young pupil should 
try to observe cadence, for a rhythmic movement tends to the 
automatic performance of the exercises, and so lessens the 
sense of fatigue, by relieving the brain of care in directing 
the muscle-action. The habit, however, of thorough work 
must be first formed, and the mind fixed on this, before allow- 
ing the movements to become automatic. 


From the attitude of attention, simultaneously raise both 
anus forwards and full to the front, curving them upwards 
until the hands and dumb-bells meet together in a line with 
the mouth, elbows straight, head well back. The dumb-bells 
in this exercise should be held perpendicularly, not horizon- 
tally. From the position attained, simultaneously throw 


Sarony Photo. 


both arms smartly back, well to the rear, and in a line 
with the shoulders, chest well out. Return them quickly 
to the front again, and repeat the opening-out movement as 
often and as vigorously as you can. This exercise is designed 
to open out the chest, and to loosen and give mobility to the 
pectoral muscles of the chest, and those in the region of the 
shoulders. It will be found to have a blood-relieving effect 
on the organs of the chest and head. Two photographs, Nos. 
5 a and 6, illustrate the exercise. 


From the position of attention, flex both forearms upwards 
from the elbow, palms inwards, as shown in the left arm of 
photograph No. 6. Now, alternately raise each arm in a verti- 
cal line with the body, taking care to extend the arm over the 
head to its full length. The return movement should bring 
the elbow back close to the side and well to the rear. The 
head and trunk should be kept straight, the chest pressed 
forwards, and the arms kept well back, during this movement. 
The muscles brought into play in this exercise, in addition to 
the biceps, triceps, and deltoid, are those of the back and sides, 
chiefly the trapesius, latissimus dorsi, and teres major. Their 
action tends to open the chest and increase its mobility. 


Take the position of attention ; the hands and dumb-bells 
resting lightly on the front of the thighs, knuckles outwards, 
knees bent, chest drawn inwards and downwards, back 
slightly curved. Raise the arms alternately, stretched to 
their full extent, forwards and upwards, till they are in a 
line with the top of the head, lowering the one arm as the 
other is raised. Maintain this exercise as long and as briskly 
as possible, taking care to leave the lungs and breathing 


action absolutely free and unimpeded. The movement tends 
to increase the mobility of the shoulder-joints, and especially 
to strengthen the anterior deltoid, the' serratus magnus, 
latissimus dorsi and pectoral muscles. 


This exercise will he found useful for loosening and making 
flexible the muscles of the wrist. From the position of 
attention, elevate both arms outwards until they are at right 
angles with the body, keeping them rigid and the muscles 
tense. Then, turn each hand and dumb-bell simultaneously 
round as far as possible on the axis of the wrist, maintaining 
the movement till pliancy is imparted and the muscles are 
tired. The exercise may be supplemented by bending the 
hand backwards and forwards on the wrist. See that the 
arms do not droop from the shoulder alignment, and that they 
are not allowed to turn on the elbow-joint : the movement is 
wholly executed by the wrists. 


Take up the dumb-bells by the sphere or bulb ends, grasping 
the bosses firmly in the hollow of the hands. Now, simul- 
taneously raise the arms outwards, in a line with the body, 
till they reach the level of the shoulders. In this position, 
rotate the right-hand dumb-bell from left to right, and the 
left-hand dumb-bell from right to left, by a circular motion 
of the wrist. Keep up the exercise till the muscles tire. The 
rotary movement is executed wholly by the wrist, and will be 
found to act beneficially on the numerous muscles of the fore- 
arm, and tend to give them mobility. 


Morrison Photo. 


Sarony Photo. 



This is the same movement reversed ; that is to say, the 
rotary movement of the right hand should be from right to 
left, and of the left hand from left to right. The continued 
exercise of this movement will give flexibility to the muscles 
of the forearm, and impart to them strength and endurance. 


Place the dumb-bells on the floor, where they should lie 
lengthwise along the outer side of each foot, the centre of the 
bar on a line with the toes. Seize them and rise to the posi- 
tion of attention, the head and body erect, the knees unbent. 
Turn half round on the heels to the left, the toes being at an 
angle of 60 degrees ; the body, which should turn on the hips, 
ought, as much as possible, to keep the front position. At 
the same time, bring the left forearm upwards to the waist, 
at right angles with the body ; take a good step forward with 
the right foot, and lunge out forcibly with the left arm in the 
same direction, as if striking a hard blow, and recover quickly. 
Bring back the advanced leg with the alternate recover. 
Repeat the movement until the muscles are well exercised, 
the right arm. remaining tense by the side. In the return 
movement, bring the elbow well back, and press the chest 
\vell forward. The muscles brought into play in this exercise 
are the anterior deltoid, the biceps, the triceps, the serratus 
magnus, and the pectoralis major. When the body is turned 
( >i> the hip, the lunging movement is beneficial to the abdom- 
inal muscles and assists circulation in that region. 


This is the same movement reversed ; bringing into play 


the right arm and left foot instead of the left arm and right 
foot. The half-turn will consequently be to the right, and the 
left foot be advanced, to maintain the balance of the body. 
In these movements circulation and respiration are materially 
benefited. The breath should be inhaled as the arms are 
drawn back, and exhaled when thrust forward. This and the 
previous exercise, it will be noted, vary from those which 
precede them, in this respect, that the pulling-up muscles 
have hitherto been exercised, while the stretching-out ones 
come now into play. 


This exercise is practiced without the dumb-bells. From 
the position of attention, the pupil will throw himself forward 
towards the floor, supporting the body, in a rigid position, on 
the unbent arms and the toes ; then, alternately lower the 
body, by slowly bending the elbows, until it reaches the prone 
position, and raise it, by straightening the arms, repeating 
the movement as many times as possible. Care should be 
taken that the body and lower limbs are kept rigidly straight 
and do not touch the floor, that the head is kept well 
up and the knees unbent. The exercise, will be found ex- 
cellent for strengthening all the muscles of the body, and 
for expanding the chest. As the strain, in the dipping and 
raising of the body, is severe, the movement should be in- 
dulged in mildly, until the biceps and triceps are pretty well 
hardened. When facility in the movement has been gained. 
the effort should be made to stretch the body, in the prone 
position, horizontally forwards as far as possible (nose more 
in front), at each performance, that the full benefit of the 
exercise may be obtained. 


This exercise is the same as No. 13, only rendered more 


Sarony Photo. 


difficult by the tension of the rubber straps which encirclo the 
neck, and, by the resisting power, increase the development of 
the arms in the effort to raise the body from the prone posi- 
tion. The exercise will be more fully explained, with a 
description of the machine, to which the rubber straps are 
adjusted, in a later page. See front and profile views in 
photographs Nos.14 a and 6. 


This exercise is designed to bring into play the rectus 
abdominis and other muscles of the abdomen, and has an 
important effect on the digestion. It should at first be per- 
formed without the dumb-bells, then with dumb-bells of in- 
creasing weight. Lie flat on the back on the floor, couch or 
bench, covered by a rug, at full length, the arms close by the 
sides, the feet pushed under the bureau, weighted or strapped 
to the floor, to give purchase to the body ; then alternately 
raise the body on the hip- joints, from the prone to the sitting 
position, and slowly lower it again to the horizontal position, 
repeating the movements until the abdominal muscles feel 
the tiring effect of the exercise. After a time, when the pupil 
has accustomed himself to the strain of the movement, he may 
render it more difficult by taking a dumb-bell in each hand, 
and, when in the prone position, raising the arms and stretch- 
ing them back over the head, and then going through with 
the trunk-raising and lowering movements, as above described. 
The exercise may also be performed without weighting or 
strapping the feet. A deep breath should be taken before 
raising the body, and exhaled in lowering it. In raising the 
body to the sitting position, it should also be bent forwards as 
far as possible towards the feet. With the dumb-bells in the 
hands, it will be found advantageous also to cross the wrists 
over the head, and so bring the body upwards and forwards, 

the head locked, as it were, in the upward-extended arms and 
moved in unison with them. For persons of full habit and 
having a tendency to be fat, the exercise will be found very 
beneficial, the increased blood-circulation absorbing the fatty 
deposits, and the exercise itself being unfavourable to fatty 


This is a squatting exercise designed to develop the quadri- 
ceps extensor, or great extensor muscle of the thigh. (See 
page 192.) Take a dumb-bell in each hand, and come to the 
position of attention, the body straight, the head erect, the 
chest thrust out, and the shoulders and hips held well back. 
By bending the knees, dip the body in a vertical line to the 
heels, keeping the back straight and the chin drawn in. Re- 
cover and repeat the movement until the muscles ache. This 
is a good exercise in poising the body and in giving suppleness 
to the knee-joints. If the muscles of the leg and thigh have 
been well toned, their natural elasticity will render the move- 
ment easy. Take care not to let the body sway or incline for- 
wards or backwards on the hips. After a pause, the exer- 
cise may be varied by raising the heels and throwing the 
weight of the body entirely on the toes, keeping rigidly the 
position of attention, and rising as high as possible in each 
motion without losing the balance. Continue the movement 
for some time, as it will be found of much benefit to the 
muscles of the calf ; it will also give elasticity to those of the 
foot and ankle. 


This exercise may be practised either with or without dumb- 
talls. From the position of attention, slowly bend the trunk 
cutwards on the hip-joint, alternately to the left and right, 



Sarony Photo. 


Morrison Photo. 


the hand or dumb-bell slightly pressing the outer side of the 
thigh, and slipping down until it reaches the bend of the knee. 
When one hand touches the side of the knee the other hand 
should be raised under the arm just above the serratus mag- 
nus muscle. The exercise will be good for the balancing mus- 
cles of the trunk as well as for the obliquus abdominis and other 
muscles that support and protect the sides of the abdomen. 
It will also give flexibility to the back-bone, and increase the 
blood circulation, chiefly along the feeding veins of the stomach 
and the liver. 

NOTE. It has been thought well to append here, by icay of suggestion, the fol- 
lowing table giving the number of times the movements in each of the foregoing 
exercises are to be practised daily, and the ratio of increase on each occasion after- 
wards, as the pupil may feel himself able to bear the strain of the more heavily- 
imposed task. Women and children should try to do one-fifth, or one-fourth, the 
number of movements indicated for men. 

Ex. No. 1. 50 times, each hand. 

2. 25 

3. 10 " 

4. 10 " 

5. 5 " 

6. 15 " 

7. 10 " 

8. till arm drops 

9. " " 

10. " " " 

11. 10 times. 

12. 10 " 

13. 3 " 

14. 2 " 

15. 3 " 

16. 10 " 

17. 15 " 

Increase every day, 

Increase eve y third day, 1. 
other " 1. 

Increase every second day 1. 



THE exercises in Heavy- Weight Lifts, it must here be said, 
chiefly by way of caution, are designed for those only who 
desire, and have the necessary strength, to become athletes. 
For ordinary health purposes, and for reducing corpulency or 
checking the tendency to become fat, the light-weight exercises 
which precede those now about to be detailed, will be found 
sufficient, especially in the case of those who have not robust 
frames, or whose daily life limits them to confining pursuits. 
Heavy-weight lifts, of course, should not be attempted by 
those who suffer from spinal complaint or have weak hearts, 
though both ailments are hygienically benefited by a course of 
exercise with the light-weight dumb-bells. To those who feel 
strong enough for the task, however, and who, by the loosen- 
ing and hardening of the muscles gained in the previous 



Morrison Photo. 


exercises, have acquired facility in handling weights, the 
following movements may be indulged in, though with dumb- 
bells ranging, it is suggested, at first, from 12 to 56 Ibs., and, 
afterwards, beyond those, to weights always within the 
strength-compass and adroitness of the athlete. He will soon 
learn, not only what weights are within his ability safely to 
lift, but how to balance the body in the line of gravity, that 
the weight may be poised with the support of the whole frame, 
rather than with the muscles of the arm alone. It is recom- 
mended that the pupil, before proceeding to the heavy weights, 
should spend at least three months in performing the prelim- 
inary light-weight exercises. 


Place the dumb-bell longitudinally between the feet, sphere- 
ends to the front and rear, the connecting bar of the bell 
which should be 4i inches in length in line with the hollow of 
the foot, the heels ten inches apart, and the toes turned out at 
a comfortable angle. (See photo. No. 18.) In lowering the 
body to grasp the dumb-bell, bend the knees, but keep the 
back straight. Grasp the dumb-bell with the right hand, the 
arm straight, the left hand resting on the forepart of the left 
thigh. Without pausing, pull the dumb-bell straight up to 
the chest, using the left thigh as a fulcrum ; at the same time, 
flex the forearm at the elbow, and straighten the knees. The 
instant this is done, dip the knees smartly, and, by a simul- 
taneous motion, turn the bell upwards by getting the right 
forearm underneath it, the elbow resting on the hip-joint, the 
left hand at ease on the left hip, (See photo. No. 19.) This 
exercise will be found beneficial to the biceps of the arm, and 
to the lower limbs, the latter contributing two-thirds of the re- 


quisite energy. The movement may also he performed in the 
same manner with the left hand, the right hand giving the 
purchase on the right thigh. 

To elevate the dumb-bell from the shoulder over the head, 
the movement may be performed either by the jerk or by the 
slow-press motion : the latter mode will be described in the 
next exercise. To elevate by the jerk, dip the knees smartly, 
and throw the arm upwards to its full extension, bringing 
the bell over the head, in the centre of the body's gravity. In. 
these one-hand exercises, especially, the eyes should follow the 
movements of the hand-encircled dumb-bell. The two move- 
ments described in this exercise may be made continuous, 
though performed in two time-beats ; one, from the ground to 
the shoulder, tivo, from thence to the full extension of the arm 
over the head. The muscles benefited by raising the bell aloft 
are the chief muscles of the whole body those of the shoulder, 
arm, back, chest, and legs. 



The pupil-athlete will observe that the photos. Nos. 20, 21, 
22, 23, and 2-i form one group, illustrating the slow-press 
movement successively from the shoulder to the full exten- 
sion of the arm over the head, photo. No. 22 being the rear 
view of the attitude illustrated by photo. No. 21. In the 
successive movements, the eyes, as we have previously said, 
should follow closely the hand-encircled dumb-bell, that the 
body may poise itself in concert with the slow raising of the 
right arm, and so maintain the proper equilibrium. The 
weight of the bell must depend upon the skill and capacity of 
the pupil to raise it ; he should try to raise as much as he 




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comfortably can, and increase the weight slightly as he gains 
in strength and dexterity. The dumb-bell is lifted from the 
ground to the shoulder as in the previous exercise, the forearm 
when flexed being held a little more out from the body. To 
raise the weight from the shoulder by the .right hand, the 
body should be inclined over to the left, the left arm pressing 
against the upper-left thigh. As the arm is pressed upwards, 
the body should curl downwards and to the right, until it gets 
underneath the weight, the upper arm receiving partial sup- 
port from the latissimus dorsi muscle and arm-pit. By a 
strenuous effort, continue the up-pressing motion, which will 
be materially assisted as the body is straightened, aided by 
the pressure of the left hand upon the left thigh. The 
action of the disengaged arm and hand should be care- 
fully noted by the pupil-athlete. To make the matter clear, it 
may be observed, that much assistance in the slow-pressing 
aloft of heavy weights is rendered by the arm and hand not 
actively engaged in raising the weight. When the dumb-bell 
has been raised half-way up, in the righth and, the left fore- 
arm, which has been resting on the upper thigh, must now be 
instantly replaced by the left hand, the latter continuing the 
pressure on the thigh, helpful in straightening the body and 
aiding the right arm to elevate the weight. When curling 
the body under the dumb-bell, keep the forearm which presses 
it aloft always perpendicular by deflecting it outwards, so as 
to maintain the true vertical position. The feet, as a rule, 
should never change place in these slow-press exercises from 
the shoulder. 

The above slow press exercise from the shoulder may be per- 
formed with the left hand, though, of necessity, with lighter 
weights, to prevent injury to the heart, which, in all these 
left-handed movements, should not be put to an undue 
strain. This is Nature's own caution, though we may not 
violate her laws by encouraging ambidexterity, and utilia- 


ing, more than we do, the left hand. In these, and suchlike 
exercises, the pupil will find that he can press aloft a heavier 
weight than he can jerk up, and can, correspondingly, raise 
more by the jerk from the shoulder than by the snatch- lift 
from the ground aloft to the full extension of the arm. The 
gross weight raised by the jerk, is governed, in a measure, by 
the weight of the body, which must act as a counterpoise to 
the weight of the bell, otherwise the body will fall over ; 
while the gross weight raised by the snatch-lift is, in part, 
governed by the power of the hand to grasp the weight. 
Sandow's highest record in snatch-lifting, from the ground 
over the head, is 186 Ibs. ; his weight-record in jerking up- 
wards from the shoulder, is 212 Ibs. ; in slow-pressing aloft 
from the shoulder, his record is, for the left hand, 300 Ibs., 
and for the right hand, 322 Ibs. In the above exercise the 
muscles benefited, besides those of the arm and shoulder, are 
the muscles of the back, loins, and lower limbs. 


The first position in this exercise varies from the usual atti- 
tude of attention. It is that shown in photo. No. 25, the 
pupil standing over the bell, head bent and eyes looking down, 
the right hand about to grasp the dumb-bell, the left ready to 
place on the corresponding thigh for support. The dumb-bell, 
it will be seen, is placed on the floor between the feet and well 
to the rear the fore-lying sphere being in line with the heels, 
which should be further apart than in the previous exercises. 
The object of placing the dumb-bell behind the feet is that 
the necessary swing may be given it in the curved forward 
and upward movement, as the hand seizes it and elevates 


Sarony Photo. 


it aloft, the left hand resting meanwhile on the thigh, which 
acts as a fulcrum. The bar of the dumb-bell, in these swing- 
lifts, must be grasped close to the fore-lying sphere until 
the weight is swung well up, when, by a slight jerk up- 
wards, the centre of the bar and the proper poise are gained. 
The advantage of this is obvious, as the upper sphere of the 
dumb-bell will be supported in the lifting movement by the 
grip of the closed thumb and fingers, while the lower sphere, 
swinging free, will, by its own weight, receive greater impetus 
in the ascent. The pupil will now put the movement into 
practice, taking care to keep the back as straight as possible, 
bending the body freely on the hips, and, as the bell curves 
upwards, incline the body backwards, and move the right foot a 
little further to the rear, to preserve the balance. The elevat- 
ing of the dumb-bell aloft, it will be understood, is a con- 
tinuous movement, the right arm getting under it when it has 
been swung up from the floor, by a quick dip of the knees, 
and the instantaneous straightening of the arm and left leg, 
the left arm bracing the body by the support given the hand 
on the left hip. The exercise will be good for strengthening 
the spine, and the muscles of the chest, arms, and lower 



This is a slow lift from the ground to the shoulder, designed 
chiefly to develop the biceps and forearm. Photo. No. 28 will 
illustrate the first position, the dumb-bell being placed trans- 
versely between the feet, the right hand grasping the bar, the 
inner side of the forearm and the clasped fingers to the front, 
the left hand braced on the left fore-thigh. From this position, 
pull the bell steadily up as high as the knees and slowly curl 

it forwards and inwards to the shoukler, by flexing the forearm 
on the elbow and bending the wrist inwards as much as 
possible, the hip-joint acting as a fulcrum. Repeat the move- 
ment several times, alternately with the right and left hands, 
and let the weight drop slowly down to the floor. 


This is an effective as well as graceful exercise, calling into 
play the chief muscles of the trunk and limbs, and imparting 
litheness and elasticity to the movements. The bell is placed 
on the floor a little in front of the feet, ring to the right, heels 
in line, and about ten inches apart. Bending the body on 
the hips, now stoop and grasp the ring by the right hand, 
knuckles to the right, then pull the ball up sufficiently 
to clear the floor and swing it inwards between the legs, then, 
as it swings outwards again, bear it aloft, taking a step for- 
wards at the same time with the right foot to give purchase 
to the movement and balance to the body. As the ball gains 
the elevation of the head in the ring-grasped hand of the out- 
stretched arm, tilt it to the back of the hand, by an adroit 
turn of the wrist, at the same time thrusting the arm fully 
out, as in the act of lunging upwards, the body being thrown 
forwards to assist, by its weight, in pressing the ball up, and 
especially to ease or break the force of the contact of the ball 
on the forearm, as it is tilted to the back of the hand in the 
upward ascent. Repeat the movement, which will be found 
an exhilarating exercise, observing the caution not to injure 
or break the forearm by permitting the ball to come rudely 
into contact with it as it is swung aloft. Photo No. 29 illus- 
trates this exercise. 



Moirison Photo. 







The photos No. 30 and 31 will illustrate the successive 
attitudes in the performance of this exercise. Place the dumb- 
bells close to the outer side of each foot, the body, in an erect 
position, standing over them, the heels closed, the toes turned 
out at a comfortable angle, the head bent and the eyes di- 
rected downwards, the arms pendant, but held out a little from 
the body ready to grasp the bells. Keeping the back straight, 
by bending the body on the hip- joint and the legs at the knees, 
stoop down and grasp the dumb-bells close to the front bosses, 
as in photo. No. 31. Now, with a quick movement, pull the 
bells straight up to the sides of the chest, in line with the 
arm-pits, elbows bent outwards, the movement being aided by 
a hard pressure with both legs ; then step smartly to the rear 
with tlie right foot, and, slightly bending both knees, turn the 
balls upward with a sudden jerk, and get the forearms under- 
neath them, the elbows resting on the hip- joints. The whole 
movement is a quick one, the legs bearing the chief strain. To 
elevate the bells from the shoulder, the movement can be prac- 
tised either with the jerk or with the slow-press motion. The 
jerk movement is much the same as in elevating by one hand : 
practically it is easier, as the two weights maintain the body 
in equipoise. To elevate by the slow-press, the weight of the 
body must be thrown on the rear leg, which may be drawn 
further back to give increased purchase, as the dumb-bells 
rise, and to preserve the balance of the body. When half-way 
up, slow-press the weights firmly and bring the upper part of 
the body under the dumb-bells : this will make the weights 
easier to press, and be a good strengthening exercise for the 




This is a holding-out exercise, to give strength and endurance 
to the arms and back, and to develop the muscles of the chest 
and shoulders. The front and rear views of photos. Nos. 33 and 
34, illustrate the exercise. The dumb-bells are elevated over 
the head, to the full extension of the arms, as in the previous 
exercise. Now let them fall slowly down and outwards, till 
the upper arm is in alignment with the shoulders, twisting the 
forearm partially to the rear and bending the shoulders "back- 
wards to give increased support in bearing the weights. Let 
the dumb-bells be as heavy as the pupil can safely use, increas- 
ing the weight as strength and facility are gained. The 
exercise can be varied by bringing the bells from the elevated 
position slowly down and out in front of the body, knuckles 
upwards, and in a line with the mouth. Maintain the position 
as long as possible and replace the bells on the floor. The lat- 
ter exercise will be good for the deltoid, trapesius, and latissi- 
mus dorsi muscles that is, for the shoulder-muscles and those 
of the upper chest and back. 


Sarony Photo. 


3 ai 


S 6 



Illustrated by Photos. Nos. 35 and 36. 

IN these one-handed lifts the centre of the bar should, by 
some device, be indicated, to mark readily the place to be 
grasped, so that a perfect balance may be obtained. This is 
the more important, as no time should be lost in the tiring 
stooping attitude preparatory to grasping and elevating the 
bell. In stooping, keep the back as straight as possible, by 
bending the body on the hip-joints and the legs at the knees. 
The bar-bell should be placed horizontally on the ground, the 
centre of the bar over the instep, the heels together, and the 
toes turned slightly outwards. The right hand will now grasp 
the bar-bell, the inner side of the forearm to the front, 
and as straight as possible, the left hand resting on the left 


fore-thigh, near the knee, thumb inside and fingers outside 
the leg. Now pull the bar straignt up as high as the waist, 
the upper arm close to the body, the forearm at right 
angles with it, momentarily resting on the hip. At this 
instant, take a step to the right rear with the right foot, 
and, by bending the knees, turn the bar upwards by a 
swift movement of the wrist, getting the forearm under- 
neath it, then press up to the shoulder, recovering the 
right foot and straightening the body. From the- shoulder, 
the bar-bell may be elevated aloft, either by the jerk or by the 
slow-press movement, as in the methods described in raising 
the heavy-weight dumb-bells. While at the shoulder, the bar- 
bell, however, should be turned round at right angles to the 
body, spheres to the front and rear, and steadied, the eyes 
following the movements of the hand, that the proper balance 
may be maintained and the body suffer no strain. The same 
movement may be gone through with the left hand and a 
lighter weight, thus developing both sides of the body symmet- 
rically. The muscles benefited in this movement are those 
of the shoulder, chest, and legs, as well as the pulling and 
stretching muscles of the arm. 




The first position in this exercise is that described in the 
previous one, with this difference, that the backs of the fore- 
arm and hand, in grasping the bar, are to the front. It is a 
one-handed snatch-lift from the ground to the full extension 
of the right arm over the head. The whole exercise should 
be performed in one movement, without pause, the backward 
step being taken to maintain the balance, as the body recovers 


the upright position. The first motion, which merges at once 
into the second, should bring the bar, by a rapid snatch up along 
the body as high as the shoulder, when, by a sudden dip of 
the knees, the right arm should get underneath the bell, and, 
with a quick pressure of the legs, give it the needed impetus 
to the first motion to speed it aloft. This is an excellent 
exercise for the legs, right arm, and back : its practice with 
the left hand is also recommended, so as to develop both legs 
and arms equally. If you let a weight down slowly with one 
arm to the ground, hold the other straight out from the body 
to preserve the balance. 

ILLUSTRATED BY PHOTOS. Nos. 38 a, b, c, AND d. 

Bar-bell exercises should be performed with progressively 
increasing weights, according to the strength and dexterity 
of the pupil. The two-handed movement will bring into play 
all the muscles of the body and upper and lower limbs, 
especially those of the forearm and wrist, and will be found 
beneficial in expanding the chest and promoting circulation 
and digestion. Photos. Nos. 38 a and b will show the correct 
position of the bar-bell on the ground and the first attitudes 
to be assumed by the pupil. The bar-bell is placed squarely 
in front, across the instep of each foot ; the body straight, the 
arms held a little out in front ; the hands ready to make the 
grip. Now, stoop from the waist, or bend the knees, keeping 
the back straight, and seize the bar with both hands, knuckles 
to the front, the hands being from 16 to 18 inches apart, 
according to the height and breadth of the pupil. With a 
swift motion, raise the bar upwards and outwards, letting it 
turn in the hands, as the forearms are flexed at the elbow and 
placed under it by a quick dip of the knees, and bring it in a 


line with the shoulders, palms to the front, as in photo. No. BS/>. , 
the knees being straightened by a simultaneous movement, 
and the left foot carried six inches to the rear to preserve the 
balance. To raise the bar-bell over the head to the full exten- 
sion of the arms, the movement may be done with a jerk, the 
knees, by a sudden dipping motion, giving spring to the move- 
ment. Hold the bell aloft for a moment or two, as a test of 
endurance, or, if of a comparatively light weight, repeat the 
elevating movement. When exercising with weights with 
arms stretched above the head, always let the weights come 
down slowly, that the triceps muscle of the arm may feel the 
developing strain of the movement. With a bar-bell of heavier 
weight, the elevating movement from the shoulder over the 
head should be done by the slow-press motion, the legs as well 
as the arms participating in the movement, and contributing 
their share of support. By the same motion the bell may be 
gradually lowered to the chest, and then replaced on the floor. 



This is a slow-lift exercise, designed to benefit chiefly the 
muscles of the wrist and forearm. Photos. Nos. 39 and 39a, 
show the mode of turning the bar in the hand, by a slow move- 
ment, as it is brought from the thigh to the waist. Practice 
in this turning movement, which should at first be performed 
with a light-weight bar-bell, will strengthen the wrist, and 
enable the pupil to acquire the knack of the twist, preparatory 
to pressing the bell up to the top of the chest. From the 
attitude of attention, bend the body on the hip- joints, keeping 
the back as straight as possible, the arms close to the side, and 
the heels together. Now grasp the bar-bell with both hands, 


knuckles to the front, and pull it steadily and slowly up to the 
thigh, and straighten the body. The position is illustrated in 
photo. No. 39. From the thigh, raise the bar-bell slowly out- 
wards and upwards, by bending the forearms at the elbows, and 
the hands backwards on the wrists. The bar in this position 
will be clasped by the hands, the weight resting chiefly on the 
thumb, and the first joints of the turned-in fingers, as in 
photo. No. 39 a. Lower the bar to the thigh, and repeat the 
movement, as a practice to the wrists. To elevate it from the 
waist to the top of the chest, continue the pressure of the fore- 
arms from the elbows, until they are well underneath the bar, 
then press slowly up. The exercise may be continued by 
elevating the bar-bell from the chest, above the head, to the 
full extension of the arms, or over it to the rear, to be after- 
wards lowered to rest on the nape of the neck and the shoul- 
ders. When raising the bell aloft from the chest, do not bend 
the back ; stand perfectly straight and keep the head erect 
Taisis a good exercise to repeat, as it will give flexibility to the 
shoulder- joints, and develop the chest and the pushing muscles 
of the arms. 



This exercise is another mode of bringing the bar-bell to the 
shoulder, and may be practised as follows : The bar-bell, 
instead of being placed horizontally on the ground, is placed 
on end, resting on one of the spheres. It may be raised either 
by one hand, or by both, to the shoulder, according to its 
weight and the ability of the pupil to wield it. Photos. Nos. 
40 and 40 a. illustrate the two initial positions. To raise the 
bar-bell with one hand, grasp it firmly with the right hand in 
the centre of the bar, bending the body and the knees as little 
as may be necessary. Now push the lower sphere outwards, 


and, as the upper sphere tilts over, balance the bar on the up- 
turned palm and raise the bell to the shoulder by the pressure 
of the forearm, making a lever with the elbow on the hip, the 
pressure upwards being aided by the straightening motion of 
the body and the knees. From the shoulder, the bar-bell may 
be raised overhead by the jerk or by the slow-press motion, tak- 
ing care, in either act, to keep the eyes on it so as to maintain 
the poise of the bell and the balance of the body. 




To raise the bar-bell with both hands from the upright 
position on the ground to the shoulder, stoop dowir and grasp 
it firmly with both hands, as in photo. No. 40a., tilting the 
upper sphere over the shoulder to the rear, the body and feet 
adapting themselves to the swaying and steadying motions ; 
then by a firm pressure push it up to the shoulder. When 
this position has been gained, aided by the left hand in raising 
the weight to the shoulder, the bar-bell will rest entirely in the 
right hand, grasped round the centre of the bar, and the left 
hand will be withdrawn. When the bell is properly poised, it 
may be elevated, as before, to the full extension of the uplifted 
arm, by the jerk, or by the slow-press movement. If the bell 
be of moderate weight, the exercise may with advantage be 
repeated, as it will be of benefit to all the muscles of the body, 
as well as to those of the upper and lower limbs. 


This is an exercise which the pupil must adapt for himself, 
using any article which may fit itself to the purpose and can 



be caught up on the crooked finger, such as a chair, a port- 
manteau, or a scuttle of coal. The weight, which practice 
will enable the pupil successively to increase, may be suspended 
on the inner joint of the middle, or other, finger, at arm's 
length from the body, or raised between the legs, the young 
athlete having first placed his feet on two strong and firm 
chairs, or any platform raised above the elevation of the arti- 
cle to be lifted. Mr. Sandow's record- weight for finger-lifting 
is 600 pounds. In raising this weight, he usually stands on 
an elevated^staging, over a frame and platform, upon which 
rest the men or material designed to be raised. -In all heavy- 
weight lifting, care should be taken to keep the back straight, 
to prevent strain or rupture, and to throw the chief pressure 
on the legs. In right hand lifts, the left hand should find 
purchase by pressing against the left thigh, and vice versa. 


A stone lift from the ground may be raised in the same 
manner as described in the previous exercise for finger-lifts. 
Photos. Nos. 43 and 43 a will illustrate the position, the 
athlete standing astride the weight to be raised, his feet 
planted on fixed benches or steady chairs, on either side of the 
weight. It will be found convenient to use straps round the 
wrists that will not slip over the hands, but aid the latter in 
the grasp and pull of the weight. The weight should be raised 
by a straight pull upwards, the back being kept perfectly 
unbent, and the body not too far lowered to miss the purchase 
which the legs afford in the uplifting and straightening move- 
ment. When the weight is raised by one hand the disen- 
gaged hand will gain support by resting on the complement- 
tary thigh. It will be usually found that the athlete can raise 


more by one hand than he can raiso by two, the disengaged 
hand lending material assistance in the weight-lifting process. 
Mr. Sandow's stone-lifting record is 1,500 pounds. 



Photograph No. 44 will illustrate the position assumed in 
heavy-weight lifting in harness. A strong, broa.d collar, it 
will be seen, is placed round the neck and over -the shoulders, 
to which are attached four suspended chains, with hooks at 
the ends, to be fastened to the weights in the stooping attitude 
preparatory to raising them. When the collar has been ad- 
justed, and the proper position taken up, stoop down with a 
straight back and fasten the hooks, then place both hands on 
the thighs, and by a firm pressure of the legs force the body 
upwards. The exercise will be good for the shoulders and 
back, and especially for the straightening muscles of the legs 
and arms. Mr. Sandow's record for harness- lifting is 4,800 
pounds. . 





IN the previous pages we have more than once referred to 
this ingeniously contrived and useful machine, designed and 
patented by the great athlete, with the object of providing the 
necessary apparatus for exercising the lower limbs. With the 
bar-bells, and the dumb-bells, of heavy and light weight, the 
leg machine is the only mechanical appliance which Mr. 
Sandow uses or finds essential to his simple and efficient 
methods of physical training. It completes and rounds off his 
system of muscular exercise by bringing into play (1), the ex- 
tensor and flexor, that is, the stretching and pulling-up muscles 
of the leg, and (2), the abductor and adductor muscles, viz., 
those muscles that separate or draw apart, and bring together 
again, the lower limbs. The adductor muscles of the leg, more 
popularly speaking, are those which we use in gripping the 
sides of a horse in equestrian exercise. It is these abductor and 
adductor muscles that Mr. Sandow, with his accustomed thor- 


oughness in seeking to develop the ivhole body, and not parts 
of it merely, has had in view to exercise by means of this in- 
vention, for these muscles of the inner and outer thigh, which 
supplement and re-enforce those used in the act and motions of 
progression, usually come little into play. The value of the 
machine will be better appreciated if one reflects on the fact 
that the customary movements of the legs, if one is not a horse- 
man, are chiefly forwards and backwards, as in walking, run- 
ning, jumping, rowing, and bicycle- riding ; while the lateral 
movements are little, if at all, exercised, and the muscles sit- 
uate on the inner and outer thigh are neglected or kept dor- 

The leg-machine, which is of simple design and compara- 
tively cheap in its construction, is so made as to be easily 
taken apart, packed up, and, when desired, transported from 
place to place. The illustrations, Nos. 45 a, 6, c, and d, will 
show its design and uses, while a previous illustration (Nos. 14 
and 14 a), referred to in Exercise No. 14, exhibits another adap- 
tation of the invention in developing the muscles of the arms, 
shoulders and back. The machine consists of a base-board or 
platform, from five to six feet in length, having at either end 
an 'upright post or standard, secured by screws to the base- 
board, and capped by ferrules with attached hooks or eyes, 
and a cross-bar for the hands to rest upon and give steadiness 
to the upright posts. About the middle of the cross-bar or 
brace, and a little apart, are two fixed hooks upon which are 
hung stirrups, connected by one or more rubber straps or elas- 
tic cables ; into these stirrups the feet are placed for the 
purpose of exercise, either by a direct up-and-down tread, or 
by alternate lateral thrusts to the outer base of the machine. 

To the hooks on the top of the upright posts are fastened 
single, double or treble cables, which are attached at the other 
end to strong leather straps, padded on the inside. These straps 
are buckled round the legs, below or above the knee, so as to 


Morrison Photo. 


Morrison Photo. 


exercise the abductor and adductor muscles. The cables pull 
the separated legs together, as shown in illustration No. 456, 
and the exercise is derived by stretching the legs apart and 
allowing the cables to pull them slowly together again. The 
position of the pupil in this exercise is that shown in the photo., 
seated on a chair, hands clasping the brace, heels together, 
toes alone resting on the platform and aiding the limbs to 
press themselves apart. The movement should be repeated as 
long as the operator cares to give to the exercise ; it will be 
found good for the sartorius and the triceps muscles of the 
leg. If one cable coupled to each leg is not sufficient of a 
strain, then two or more may be used. In this exercise, the 
cables should cross each other and hook in the straps of the 
far leg, one being fastened above and the other fastened below 
the knee. 

A little distance below the upper end of the standards are 
additional hooks, to which are attached shorter elastic cables, 
provided at the further end with snap-hooks, to be attached to 
the outer side of the padded straps that encircle the legs just 
below the knee, (see illustration of the operator, No. 45a). In 
this exercise the position of the operator is much the same as 
in that of the previous exercise, with this difference, that the 
knees are brought together by a strong pressure and allowed 
slowly to be pulled apart by the tension of the rubber cables, 
the movement being good for developing the biceps muscles of 
the leg. 



The following figures, which are based on analyses and prices of 
specimens of materials purchased in Xew England and in Xe\v York 
City, will illustrate the variations in the amount of nutritive material 
obtained at- the same cost in different food materials at different 

Protein. Energy. 
Grams. Calories. 

Beef, sirloin, 25 cts 68 b70 

Beef, sirloin, 20 cts 86 1114 

Beef, neck, 8 cts 218 2795 

Mutton, leg, 22 cts 77 1075 

Salt pork (bacon), 12 cts 9 7295 

Chicken, 22 cts 127 (395 

Salmon, 30 cts 54 520 

Salt cod, 7 cts 259 1105 

Oysters (40 cts. per quart), 20 cts 36 325 

lien's eggs (25 cts. per dozen), 181 cts 77 910 

Milk, 7 cts. per quart. 3 cts 109 2180 

Cheese, whole milk, 15 cts 213 3420 

Butter, 30 cts none 3080 

Sugar, 5 cts none 9095 

Wheat flour, 3 cts -. 418 13680 

Wheat bread, 7| cts 136 4255 

Corn (maize) meal, 2 cts 518 20230 

Oatmeal, 5 cts : . 345 9190 

Potatoes, 75 cts. per bushel, 1 cts 163 7690 

Standards for day's food for la- j Voit's (German). ... 118 3050 

boring man at moderate work. ) Writer's (American) 125 3540 

From The Forum, Sept., 1893. 


A brief explanation of the chart may be given as follows : The 
horizontal lines extending across the chart represent the parts of 
the body measured, the names of which are given at the sides. 
The vertical lines give the percental values of the different 
measurements, ranging from the minimum at on the left to the 
maximum, 100, on the right. 

The figures at the top show, by percentages, the relative values 
of the heavy vertical lines, and the intervening light lines divide 
these spaces into four equal parts, making each subdivision beticeen 
10 and 90 per cent, 2i per cent in value, but outside these points 
only li per cent. 

The figures above indicate the per cent of individuals who were 
found to surpass and the figures below the per cent of those who 
failed to surpass any given point. 


Showing the Relation of the Individual In Size Strength Symmetry 
and Development to the Normal Standard 

* i 95 9O 80 7O 6O ! 

O4O302O10S IS? 

* 5 > S 10 20 30 4O 

60 70 80 60 95 i S 





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of a pupil of Mr. Sandow (Mr. Martinus Sieveking, of 
Chicago), within the space of three months' practice with 
heavy-weight dumb-bells, on the great athlete's system of 
Physical Training. (See photograph of pupil). The result 
has been achieved, it is proper to state, after Mr. Sieveking 
had gone through the preliminary course of light-weight exer- 
cises, with six-pound dumb-bells. 

Weight, 175 pounds (increase, 15 pounds) ; height, 5 feet 11 
inches. Measurements : Neck, 18 inches ; chest, 43 
inches (increase, 3 inches), chest expansion, Ti inches 
(increase, 3 inches) ; biceps, 16i inches (increase, 2 
inches) ; forearm, 15 inches (increase, 1| inches) ; waist, 
26 inches (reduction, 3 inches) ; thigh, 23 inches (in- 
crease, 2 inches) ; calf, 16 inches, (increase, li inches). 


It is Mr. Sandow's design to award a prize in each city 
or town he visits in which to give his public exhibitions, 
to the individual who, on furnishing adequate proof, has 
gained most within a given period under his system of physi- 
cal training by the use of light and heavy-weight dumb-bells. 
Personal communication with Mr. Sandow will elicit the pre- 
cise conditions on which it is intended to give these awards to 
pupils -in -training. On this subject, and with regard to the 
agency and sale of Mr. Sandow's patent Physical Training 
Leg Machine, dumb-bells and bar-bells, communication 
should be made to Mr. Sandow, care of his manager, 





THE striking result of four months' training, according to Sandow's 
methods, on a delicate Eton boy: a letter from Captain Givat- 
orex, Assistant-Inspector of Military Gymnasia for the British 

ALDERSHOT, 9th January, 1894. 

You may perhaps consider the following case worthy of insertion 
in the book you are shortly publishing, as an instance of the results 
accruing in a very short space of time to an individual by the per- 
sistent following out of your system of light dumb-bell exercises, etc. 

In July last I was asked if I could suggest any means of improving 
the physique of an Eton boy, who was under the required chest 
measurement for the army, i. e., for admission as a cadet to the Royal 
Military College, Sandhurst. 

Being an old pupil of yours, and having great faith in your system 
(when the pupil has a real desire to work and improve his physique), 
I determined to see what it would do in this instance. 

I subjoin my young friend's measurements taken by me on the 
25th July, a.nd again on the 26th November. The results are won- 
derful, and speak for themselves. Yet this is not a fair test of your 
system, for I was only able to give him ten lessons. 

When he first commenced, he could not press off the floor once, 
but after the expiration of four months I saw him execute this 
exercise 37 consecutive times, and he now does it 150 times each day. 

In July last he was, to use a slang term, a terrible " weed," but 
now is a fine, smart, upstanding young man with pronouncedly 
good and erect carriage of body and a general air of pride in his 
own manhood. The coats he now wears will not button across his 
chest by many inches. 

He wrote me from Cologne a week ago. His weight is now 10 
stone 7 pounds, a gain in five months of 17 pounds. I will take 


fresh measurements when he returns to this country, and send them 
on to you. 

Instead of being much below the average physique, as he was in 
July last, he is now much above it, and rapidly developing into a very 
fine young man. I wish you to distinctly understand that for these 
four months he has had no time to devote to other physical exercises, 
recreative or otherwise, than yours, as he has been working very 
hard for the Army Entrance Examination. The average time he has 
been able to give to his exercises has been half an hour twice daily. 
You will, I am sure, agree with me that this young gentleman 
deserves very great praise for the dogged aud persistent way in 
which he has worked ; for, however good the system, it is null and 
void without the concentrated " will-power " of the pupil upon the 
work in hand. 

With best wishes for the New Year, and hoping soon to see you 
back in England, 

Believe me, 

Faithfully yours, 

F. W. GREATOREX, Capt., 

Assistant-Inspector of Gymnasia. 
To Professor EUGEXE SANDOW, 
New York, U. S. A. 








ment of 





Right Forearm. 












Left Forearm. 

Left Deltoid. 



6 s2 

S A 

A Z 


July 25. 

















These measure- 
ments were 
taken after 3 
weeks' contin- 
uous work. 

Nov. 26. 











Increase 10J Ibs.